Dáil Éireann - Volume 512 - 07 December, 1999
Written Answers - Taxi Regulations.
Ms O. Mitchell Ms O. Mitchell
254. Ms O. Mitchell asked the Minister for the Environment and Local Government if the new hackney regulations introduced by his Department change in any way the public service vehicle status of the hackney licence. [25954/99]
Ms O. Mitchell Ms O. Mitchell
255. Ms O. Mitchell asked the Minister for the Environment and Local Government if he will allow hackney drivers maintain their current internal public service vehicle identification pending the introduction of regulations by his Department for a common internal identification card for all taxi and hackney drivers in the interests of public safety. [25955/99]
Mrs. Owen Mrs. Owen
257. Mrs. Owen asked the Minister for the Environment and Local Government the changes, if any, he proposes from March 2000 in regulations dealing with hackneys; whether his proposals include the removal of the driver's identification from inside the car; if the issue of a receipt to the hirer before the journey commences with the name of the hirer and the price of the trip is part of his proposals; the consideration, if any, he has given to allowing hackneys utilise bus lanes in the run up to Christmas and the New Year in order to ensure speedy use of the cars available; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [25957/99]
Mr. Molloy Mr. Molloy
Minister of State at the Department of the Environment and Local Government (Mr. Molloy): I propose to take Questions Nos. 254, 255 and 257 together.
The Road Traffic (Public Service Vehicles) (Amendment) (No. 2) Regulations 1999 provide for a standard external identification for hackneys, removal of the restrictions on the use of radios and telephonic equipment in relation to hires by hackneys, and the introduction of an agreed fare log for hackneys driving into, through or out of a taximeter area.
The regulations were the subject of prolonged consultation between my Department and interested parties, including hackney representa tives. They do not provide for any change in the licensing status of hackneys. Their provisions will not come into force until 1 March 2000 to allow licensing authorities and service providers sufficient time within which to adjust to the new requirements. As indicated in reply to Question No. 273 of 19 October 1999, it is primarily in view of their more limited service role that hackneys have not been allowed access to bus lanes and there are no proposals to change this position at this time.
The hackney sign specification has been introduced principally to assist Garda enforcement. The introduction of the fare log is also intended to provide a means of checking that the hire is appropriate to the service in respect of which the licence was granted. The fare log will consist of a simple document, to be held by the hackney driver, which will show basic information relating to the hire for inspection by the hirer and a member of the Garda on request. As regards driver licence details, the regulations require these to be carried in the hackney vehicle, but not displayed; and to be made available on request to a hackney user or member of the Garda.
Since the regulations were published, one of the groups representing hackney service providers has sought a change in some of these provisions. This request is at present under consideration in light of the deadline for commencing the new regulations.
Dáil Éireann 512 Written Answers Taxi Regulations.