Agenda and draft minutes

Licensing Committee - Thursday, 16th November, 2023 7.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Civic Offices, New Road, Grays, Essex, RM17 6SL. View directions

Contact: Kenna Victoria Healey, Senior Democratic Services Officer  Email:


No. Item


Minutes pdf icon PDF 70 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the Licensing Committee meeting held on 27 July 2023.


Additional documents:


The minutes of the Licensing Committee meeting on 27th July 2023 were discussed.


·       Item 5 - Restricted Private Hire Drivers Licences. Councillor Raper noted that the safeguarding concerns raised by herself, and two other members of the Licensing Committee were not minuted as an explanation for abstention on item 5.


Items of Urgent Business

To receive additional items that the Chair is of the opinion should be considered as a matter of urgency, in accordance with Section 100B (4) (b) of the Local Government Act 1972

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There were no items of urgent business.


Declaration of Interests

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There were no declarations of interest.


Setting of Licensing Fees 2024/2025 pdf icon PDF 101 KB

Additional documents:


The Licensing Manager presented the report to the Licensing Committee.


During questions from Members the following was highlighted:


·       Cllr Raper noted that the text on some of the appendices was too small to read without a magnify glass.

·       Cllr Green noted that £31,698 was spent on agency staff and £4,261 on overtime and asked if more staff should be employed, and if employed would that bring net costs down.

o   Agency staff were brought in to cover a maternity leave.

o   Staff carry out out-of-hours checks at pubs and clubs; an overtime budgets is essential to pay staff to do checks out-of-hours at those locations.

o   No additional staff are required.

·       Cllr Green asked how many agency staff were employed and asked if it would be worth to employ someone over the maternity period.

o   There is a possibility of a 12-month contract to cover maternity leave but there would be a struggle to recruit experienced staff on a short contract.

o   The Local Authority could try to recruit for maternity cover instead of using agency staff in the future.

·       Cllr Raper sort clarity on the term false on a spreadsheet on page 21 of the agenda

o   Spreadsheet error.

·       Cllr Ononaji asked why the increase on Animal Establishments Licences - additional premises under an arrangers element of a Home Boarding Licence, was at 8.33% where most other charge increases were at 6%. Cllr Ononaji asked if there was a particular reason.

o   The increase is approximately 6%, however, to keep figures to round number percentages may differ.

·       Cllr Ononaji asked how the Licensing team determined which services are to be reviewed.

o   Each section is looked at independently.

o   Where there is a growing deficit, the Local Authority will increase fees.

o   The Local Authority hasn’t chosen at this time to change licensing fees for taxis as they were changed last year.

o   Peaks and troughs in the service are considered.

·       Cllr Ononaji asked if the deficit is not balanced in the next 2 to 3 years does it still mean there has to be an increase again.

o   Yes, if the deficit is growing.

o   Normally look to increase every 2 to 3 years. Last year all fees were increased, this year the majority of fees would increases due to growing costs.

o   Many variables


The Licensing Manager continued with his presentation of the report to the Licensing Committee.


During questions from Members the following was highlighted:


·       Cllr Maney sought clarity on the LA03 (Licensing Act 2003) figures.

o   Negative figures on spreadsheet are surpluses, positive figures are deficits.

o   The Local Authority is running LA03 at a deficit.

o   LA03 fees are statutory set by the government. It is costing the Local Authority more each year to administer.

·       Cllr Maney noted the high number of deficits.

·       Cllr Green noted the deficit stood at £32,135 for animal establishments and asked how other local authorities were managing their deficits.

o   Other local authorities’ deficits/surplus are not known, only what  ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.