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Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Zoom meeting

Contact: Sarah Chadwick  Democratic Governance Advisor

Link: View Here

Items
No. Item

1.

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

Members are asked to declare any interests in the items under consideration and in doing so state:

 

(1) the type of interest concerned either a

 

(a)   personal interest

(b)   prejudicial interest

(c)    disclosable pecuniary interest (DPI)

 

and

 

(2) the nature of the interest concerned

 

If any member requires advice on declarations of interests, they are advised to contact the Head of Democratic Governance in advance of the meeting.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest on this occasion.

2.

MINUTES OF THE LAST MEETING HELD ON 22 SEPTEMBER 2020 pdf icon PDF 198 KB

To agree the minutes of the last meeting held on 22 September 2020 as a true and correct record.

Minutes:

The Licensing Committee considered the minutes of the meeting held on 22 September 2020.

 

Resolved:

 

That the minutes of the meeting of the Licensing Committee held on 22 September 2020 be approved and signed by the Chairman as a correct record.

3.

REVIEW OF STATEMENT OF LICENSING POLICY AND CUMULATIVE IMPACT ASSESSMENT pdf icon PDF 223 KB

To consider approving the proposed Statement of Licensing Policy and associated Cumulative Impact Assessment and recommend them to the Executive and Council.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Licensing Committee was asked to consider approving the proposed Statement of Licensing Policy and associated Cumulative Impact Assessment and recommend them to the Executive and Council.

 

Mrs Sharon Davies, Senior Licensing Solicitor, presented the item and advised Members that an eight week consultation had recently been completed during which comments were invited from licence holders, their representatives and Responsible Authorities on the proposed documents. Mrs Davies reported that only one response had been received which related to a specific CCTV condition on a licence and it was proposed that on balance no further changes were required to the Licensing Policy and Cumulative Impact Assessment following the consultation.

 

Having reviewed the responses to the consultation the Committee agreed to recommend the proposed Statement of Licensing Policy and Cumulative Impact Assessment to the Executive and Council, subject to some minor typographical errors being amended as highlighted by Members.

 

Resolved:

1.     To recommend the proposed Statement of Licensing Policy to the Executive and Council, subject to minor typographical errors being amended as highlighted.

2.     To recommend the proposed Cumulative Impact Assessment to the Executive and Council.

 

4.

REVIEW OF SEX ESTABLISHMENT POLICY pdf icon PDF 211 KB

To consider the draft revised Sex Establishment Policy and, subject to any amendments the Committee may wish to make, to authorise an eight-week consultation on the draft policy.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Licensing Committee considered the draft revised Sex Establishment policy.

 

Mrs Sharon Davies, Senior Licensing Solicitor, presented the item and advised Members that the current policy was approved in 2016 and was therefore due for review. She explained that the primary aim of the policy was to set out how the Council dealt with Sex Shops and lap dancing clubs (Sexual Entertainment Venues) in its area. The Committee was informed that, if approved, the draft Sex Establishment Policy would be subject to an eight week consultation, following which the policy would be brought back to the Committee for further consideration.

 

Mrs Davies highlighted the amendments to the draft Policy, in particular the proposed reduction in the number of sex establishments deemed appropriate and additions and amendments to the standard conditions for Sexual Entertainment Venues. Members were informed that the Council, as a White Ribbon accredited authority, was working towards a setting a zero limit on the number of Sexual Entertainment Venues, although exceptions would be made for existing businesses currently trading until their licences lapsed, were revoked, surrendered or not renewed.

 

The Committee discussed the proposed reduction in the number of sex establishments and Members considered the removal of “grandfather rights” for existing Sexual Entertainment Venues in order to more quickly reduce the number of premises. In regards to the Policy’s proposed addition of further standard conditions to Sexual Entertainment Venue Licences, it was felt that these would provide additional regulation to the sector.

 

The Committee concluded that at present it was right to consult on the revised policy which included grandfather rights for existing premises. It was therefore agreed to authorise an eight week consultation on the draft Policy as submitted.

 

Resolved:

 

To authorise an eight-week consultation on the draft Sex Establishment Policy.

5.

LICENSING UPDATE pdf icon PDF 210 KB

To update the Committee on the details of licences applied for, dealt with and appealed in the period 11 September 2020 to 31 December 2020 and to update the Committee on recent licensing enforcement activities.

Minutes:

The Licensing Committee received an update on the details of licences applied for, dealt with and appealed in the period 11 September 2020 to 31 December 2020 together with an update on recent licensing enforcement activities.

 

Mrs Sharon Davies, Senior Licensing Solicitor, highlighted to the Committee details of the ten new Premises Licence applications received, six of which were granted administratively as no objections had been received and four of which were still in the representation period. During the same period, the Licensing Service also received two variation applications, 40 applications to vary the Designated Premises Supervisor and 27 transfers of Premises Licence.

 

Mrs Davies further advised that appeals remained outstanding against the decision of a licensing panel to vary the Premises Licences for the Lawton Hotel, Charnley Road and the Beechfield Hotel, Hornby Road. In response to a question regarding the progress of these cases, the Committee was informed that Case Management hearings were listed for both appeals at the Magistrates Court in February and Mrs Davies indicated that she did not expect the appeals to be resolved before summer.

 

Mr Lee Petrak, Licensing and Trading Standards Manager, updated Members on the work of the licensing enforcement team and explained that there had been reduced enforcement activity in on-licensed premises in recent months due to the enforced coronavirus business closures, and that the taxi trade had also been significantly impacted by reduced passenger numbers. Mr Petrak advised the Committee that the Public Protection team, within which Licensing Enforcement sits, continued to be on the front line in enforcing Coronavirus regulations and safe working guidelines.

 

Mr Petrak reported that the enforcement team were currently visiting larger retail settings following advice from the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government to ensure that they were operating in a Covid-safe manner. The Committee were informed of the clear reporting methods for Covid breaches available to the public, and Mr Petrak indicated there were currently no major issues in the town and that compliance from businesses was generally good.

 

In response to a question from the Committee in regards to the types of complaints being received, Mr Petrak stated that since the new year complaints tended to be in relation to the wearing of facemasks in smaller retail settings, or activity in close contact service premises and gyms. He confirmed that complaints were allocated and investigated on a daily basis.

 

Resolved:

 

To note the update on licences considered, dealt with and appealed and to note the update on Licensing Enforcement.