Uber licence renewal
Following a meeting on 31 October, Brighton & Hove City Council has extended Uber’s licence to operate a taxi service in the city for a further six months.
The decision on the length of the extension was taken to allow the council to monitor the outcome of the Transport for London Uber decision, and consider whether any of the information arising from the case had direct implications for the operation in the city. It also allows the council more time to negotiate with Uber about a number of proposed conditions for operating in the city.
In making the decision, officers studied reports and written submissions from interested parties. While there was no evidence to suggest that public safety had been compromised, there are a number of concerns, and Uber are working with the council to address these and reassure residents and visitors about their safety.
Under national law, licensed drivers can operate anywhere in the country, so drivers licensed elsewhere are allowed to operate in the city. Many authorities have fewer conditions attached to their licensing than is the case here.
When licensing operators, Brighton & Hove City Council work with them to maintain and enhance standards of safety, which includes trying to ensure that drivers not licenced locally can be as accountable as possible. We’re working with Uber to ensure safety standards are maintained and address the challenges brought about by technological changes.
All Brighton & Hove private hire and Hackney Carriage drivers in the city operate under the same licences and the same guidelines contained in the Blue Book, whichever company they drive for. Likewise, all drivers undergo the same background checks.
Following the council’s standard procedure for renewing taxi operators’ license renewals, the decision was taken by officers under delegated authority. A decision on the process to look at the license at the end of this six month period will be taken in the new year.