Agenda and minutes

Venue: The Breckland Conference Centre, Anglia Room, Elizabeth House, Walpole Loke, Dereham, NR19 1EE

Contact: Democratic Services  Tel: 01362 656870


No. Item


Minutes (Agenda item 1) pdf icon PDF 136 KB

To confirm the Minutes of the meeting held on 11 January 2023.


The Minutes of the meeting held on 11 January 2023 were agreed as a correct record.


Councillor Monument and Councillor Dowling abstained from voting on the Minutes as they had not attended the meeting in January.


Apologies (Agenda item 2)

To receive apologies for absence.


Apologies for absence had been received from Councillors Bowes and Kiddle-Morris.


Urgent Business (Agenda item 3)

To note whether the Chairman proposes to accept any item as urgent business, pursuant to Section 100(B)(4)(b) of the Local Government Act, 1972.




Declaration of Interests (Agenda item 4)

The duties to register, disclose and not to participate for the entire consideration of the matter, in respect of any matter in which a Member has a disclosable pecuniary interest are set out in Chapter 7 of the Localism Act 2011.  Members are also required to withdraw from the meeting room as stated in the Standing Orders of this Council.



None declared.


Non-Members Wishing to Address the Meeting (Agenda item 5)

To note the names of any non-members who wish to address the meeting.


None in attendance.


Review of taxi licence fees (Agenda item 6) pdf icon PDF 205 KB

Report of Craig Fowler – Environmental Health and Licensing Manager.


Additional documents:


Sarah Shipley, the Assistant Director for Health & Housing presented the report.


As Members were most probably aware, as part of the Council’s budget setting process, all fees and charges had been considered, and an inflationary increase of 6.5% had been applied based on advice from The Treasury. 


These fees formed part of the budget’s Medium Term Financial Plan as approved at the Full Council meeting in February 2023.


At the Licensing Committee meeting on 11 January 2023, Members had been advised by Craig Fowler, the Environmental Health & Licensing Manager, that a consultation on the proposed fee increases would take place with the taxi trade in accordance with the relevant legislation.


The proposed fees had been included at Appendix A of the report.  The consultation exercise had now been completed that consisted of a notice in the Eastern Daily Press, a display of the Public Notice at the Council offices and an email that was sent to the trade on 31 January 2023.  14 responses had been received and had been attached at Appendix C of the report.


These responses largely raised concerns about the proposed fare increases, particularly given that the fees had already been increased the previous year. 


It was noted that the Portfolio Holder, Councillor Helen Crane, who had the responsibility for Licensing had the power to amend the fees.  Members were therefore asked to consider the report together with the consultation responses and determine a recommendation to the Portfolio Holder.


Referring to the advice from the Treasury, Councillor Ashby, asked if the 6.5% increase had formed part of their advice.


Members were informed that this had been a decision taken to apply such an increase to all the Council’s discretionary fees due to the Treasury advice received.


Councillor Kiddell asked if other authorities in the district were implementing the 6.5% increase due to the Treasury recommendations.


The Assistant Director for Health & Housing explained that other local authorities in the district reviewed their fees on an annual basis and whether they would be using that figure or not was unknown, and she did not have that information to hand.


Councillor Brindle asked if the increase of 6.5% would mean that the taxi drivers would actually be paying the full rate and not be subsidised. 


Members were informed that a detailed exercise was carried out in 2022 in terms of reviewing the fees and charges for the delivery of this service to ensure that the Council was charging enough for cost recovery, but this year the 6.5% inflationary increase had been applied rather than undertaking a further exercise.


Councillor Brindle then asked if was reasonable for drivers to accept a further significant increase so soon after the last increase.


Councillor Morton was concerned that in the comments received by the taxi firms they seemed to be at a disadvantage compared to Norfolk County Council. 


The Environmental Health & Licensing Manager felt that the context of the comments received was in terms of the pressure the cost increase that this would  ...  view the full minutes text for item 14/23


Next Meeting (Agenda item 7)

To note the arrangements for the next meeting on Wednesday, 14 June 2023 at 10am in the Anglia Room.


The arrangements for the next meeting on Wednesday, 14 June 2023 at 10am in the Anglia Room were noted.