Cabinet considered the head of legal and democratic’s report on a proposal to introduce maximum hackney carriage fares. The proposal had been subject to consultation during the summer; the report set out the consultation results.
Cabinet recalled that in June 2021, the council had adopted a new Joint Taxi Licensing Policy with Vale of White Horse District Council, which included setting a maximum tariff for journeys carried out by South Oxfordshire licensed hackney carriages within South Oxfordshire district. The aim of the policy was to protect the public, reduce the risk of fraudulent fares, and ensure consistency, whilst still allowing for competition between taxi companies. Journeys outside of the district would not be affected by the maximum fares.
Cabinet considered the advantages and disadvantages of introducing maximum fares. Only six councils in the country did not have a maximum tariff; South Oxfordshire being one of them. On balance, Cabinet considered that it had to consider the needs of the taxi trade alongside the need to protect the public. Cabinet members considered that the council should adopt the maximum fare tariff as set out in Appendix C to the report. The proposed maximum sat within the upper range adopted by other councils; members considered that this was reasonable. However, members also considered that this tariff should be reviewed within one year, and hoped that the council could work with the South and Vale Taxi Drivers’ Association.
(a) note the results of the consultation, set out in Appendix B to the head of legal and democratic’s report to Cabinet on 29 September 2022;
(b) adopt the proposed maximum hackney carriage fares, set out in Appendix C to the report, with effect from 1 October 2022; and
(c) undertake a review of the hackney carriage fares within one year.