To consider the report of the Director of Service Delivery (copy enclosed).
The Committee considered the report of the Director of Service Delivery seeking Members’ consideration of an action plan to improve emissions from taxis by:
· introducing an age limit for hackney carriage and private hire vehicles to meet air quality objectives in the soonest possible time;
· installing electric vehicle charging points in Maldon for taxi drivers
The report provided background information regarding the Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) declared on Market Hill by the Council in December 2018. Members were advised that Section 84 of the Environment Act 1995 required local authorities to develop Air Quality Action Plans within 12 months of declaring an AWMA and detail measures to tackle the problems causing exceedances.
The report set out how the Air Quality Action Plan (AQAP) would set out the measures that the Council would take to improve air quality in the District between 2020 and 2025. The actions were detailed in the report and it was noted that if approved they would be included in the AQAP which would be brought forward for public consultation during 2020.
A debate ensued and in response to questions raised further information on the proposals was provided by Officers.
There was some concern raised regarding the wording of the recommendations and the Director of Service Delivery clarified that if agreed the actions detailed in the recommendations would form part of the AQAP which would then be subject to public consultation.
Following further discussion Councillor W Stamp proposed that consideration of this report be deferred until the recommendation was appropriately worded. This proposal was not seconded.
Councillor A S Fluker, Leader of the Council, referred to paragraph 3.5.4 of the report and proposed that an additional recommendation be added to state that the bullet points detailed in recommendation (i) and recommendation (ii) form part of the public consultation. This proposal was duly seconded and subsequently agreed.
(i) That, in relation to the age restriction, the Council introduces an age limit for hackney carriage and private hirevehicles:
· From 1 January 2021, licensed vehicles can continue to be licensed until they reach 12 years of age or 15 years for a purpose built taxi.
· From 1 January 2021, all newly licensed vehicles will be of a Euro 6 standard for both petrol and diesel vehicles.
· From 1 January 2026, all newly licensed vehicles will be of an electric hybrid or ultra-low emission standard.
(i) That, in relation to Electric Vehicle (EV) charge points, that EV charge points to support taxi drivers are approved and a further options report be brought to a future meeting of the Strategy and Resources Committee to consider locations and tariffs.
(ii) That the points set out in recommendations (i) and (ii) above are subject to public consultation as part of the Air Quality Action Plan.