THE LEADER of the Tory group on Leeds City Council has urged the authority to think hard before voting on changes to Hackney carriage regulations which could allow licences to pass to widows of holders who die while still registered.
At the moment, families of some taxi drivers have argued they risk losing not only a loved one but their livelihood if they are bereaved.
However, Coun Andrew Carter says he is worried, if the principle of inheritance is accepted, some licences could pass to people who don’t speak English - contrary to the council’s own rules on who is a “fit and proper” person to hold them.
“This would be a huge step backwards for Leeds, and flies in the face of the work of successive governments to promote inclusivity in the UK,” he said.
Liberal Democrat spokesman Coun Ryk Downes admitted he had some concerns adding: “It will be interesting to see what comes back as a result of consultation - although I think it needs to comply with the existing standards.”
However, Labour’s Coun Graham Hyde claimed Coun Carter had “jumped the gun”.
“It’s all out for consultation with the public and the trade. If the public say they don’t want to see Hackney carriage licences go to widows, then it won’t happen,” he said.