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To approve as an accurate record, and the Chairman to sign, the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 12th October 2011.
The minutes of the meeting held on 12th October 2010 be confirmed and signed as an accurate record of the proceedings.
Apologies for Absence
Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Carlebach, Hamilton, Karmel, and Thorley.
Declarations of Interest
If a Councillor has any prejudicial or personal interest in a particular report he/she should declare the existence and nature of the interest at the commencement of the consideration of the item or as soon as it becomes apparent.
At meetings where members of the public are allowed to be in attendance and speak, any Councillor with a prejudicial interest may also make representations, give evidence or answer questions about the matter. The Councillor must then withdraw immediately from the meeting before the matter is discussed and any vote taken, unless a dispensation has been obtained from the Standards Committee.
Where members of the public are not allowed to be in attendance, then the Councillor with a prejudicial interest should withdraw from the meeting whilst the matter is under consideration, unless the disability has been removed by the Standards Committee.
There were no declarations of interest.
This report comprises an update on Licensing activity for the 2010-11 municipal year, and on planned activity in the 2011-12 municipal year. In addition, the Committee will receive short presentations on aspects of the report, and a short presentation from Police Sergeant Stuart Ratcliffe, Licensing Sergeant for Hammersmith and Fulham.
Valerie Ellison, Head of Commercial Operations, introduced the report, which set out licensing activity in the 2010-11 municipal year, planned activity for the 2011-12 year and future developments in licensing law and practice. She drew the Committee’s attention to the section on training for Licensing Committee members. She said that officers had prepared a training pack to issue to new members, and that this would replace a formal training session. Members would also be invited to consult with licensing and/or legal officers as necessary.
Councillor Needham and Cartwright suggested that new members should attend a Licensing Sub-Committee as an observer. The Committee agreed that new members should be invited to attend a Licensing Sub-Committee before they were invited to sit as a Sub-Committee member.
The Committee then received 3 short presentations on aspects of the report
Shepherds Bush Cumulative Impact Policy
Adrian Overton, Licensing Officer, presented to the Committee on the introduction of the Shepherds Bush Cumulative Impact Zone, which had been agreed by the meeting of Full Council on 29 Jun 2011. The introduction of the zone required premises to explain, should they seek to extend licensable activities, why this would not have an effect, removing the onus on those making representations to do so. The zone had been designed based on extensive research and field observation, and was designed to have a positive impact on the area, by giving sub-committees greater powers to prevent further disruption.
Rebalancing the Licensing Act
Lewis Aldous, Licensing Officer, gave a presentation on the measures within the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Bill, which was currently at the Third Reading stage in Parliament. The measures sought to strengthen the ability of local authorities, the police and residents to meet the licensing objectives. Changes included licensing departments becoming responsible authorities, health authorities receiving the same status, and instituting a need for applicants to consider the local area in their application, together with a number of smaller measures, including changes to the TEN process and an abolition of the proximity requirement for representations.
The Chairman asked officers to outline the changes to the TEN process. Lewis Aldous said that the Bill would add an expedited 5 day application process for TENs, but with the police able to turn down an application made under that process without recourse to a Sub-Committee; the 10 day process would also remain in place, with the addition of Environmental Protection as a responsible authority able to make an objection. Nick Austin, Assistant Director of Public Protection and Safety, said that the shorter process would enable applications to be made at shorter notice, benefiting community events and responsible licensees, without sacrificing the current safeguards.
Councillor Aherne suggested that the elimination of vicinity could be a mistake, meaning that authorities could receive large volumes of representations from people who lived a long way from the premises under consideration. Councillor Smith said that he appreciated those concerns, but that the current rules prevented people from making representations with regards to premises that were ... view the full minutes text for item 4.