Limo operators in Leeds, Yorkshire have been contacted by local authorities urging them to get licensed or be a risk of going to jail.
The City Council has been contacting businesses in the area who are listed in local directories as offering a ‘hire and reward’ service as it launches a consultation exercise aimed at getting the industry licensed.
Documents have been sent which highlight the changes which are planned to come into affect early next year and is aimed at cracking down on illegal operators. The documents feature extensive spider graphs so drivers and operators can find out if they need to obtain a license under the new laws.
The Road Traffic Safety Act 2006, section 53, repeated the part of section 75 of the local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 1976 which exempted certain categories of Private Hire drivers and vehicles from the need to be licensed if they conducted their business by having hire contracts of not less than seven days.
Leeds City Council has expressed that there are a wide range of categories of drivers, vehicles and operators who were previously exempted, but who will now need to be licensed by January 2008.
As a general guide, the City Council has highlighted executive hire, chauffeur services, airport travel, stretch limousines and novelty vehicles as those who need to take note of the new regulations. This is not an exhaustive list, but does highlight that those who were, or who thought they could avoid being licensed by using ‘notional’ seven day contract, now very clearly must be licensed by the local authority for the area they operate in.
Leeds City Council is responsible for licensing Hackney Carriages and Private Hire vehicles and their drivers in Leeds. It is the councils job to make sure the trade in Leeds is operated in a professional manner and that the correct standards of safety and comfort are satisfied by all vehicles, drivers and operators.
For more information on the new regulations or to find out if you need to be licensed, please contact Martyn Johnson, Principal Officer at Leeds City Council on 0113 2143366.