Page last updated at 06:40 GMT, Tuesday, 8 April 2008 07:40 UK

Settlement hope in taxi fees row

Stockton taxi drivers protest
Drivers claim they cannot afford a further hike in charges

Teesside taxi drivers have said they are hopeful a deal can be struck with council bosses over a planned rise in licence fees.

Drivers have already taken part in two "go slow" protests in Stockton over claims they are facing a 300 increase.

Stockton Council has said the rises are needed to better reflect the time spent on licensing issues by its staff.

But the authority is to consider revised proposals after a meeting with Stockton Hackney Carriage Association.

Association chairman Basharat Mahmood, 46, said: "This was a very useful meeting and I am hopeful that we will receive some very positive formal response from the council by Friday of this week.

"In the course of the discussions, the council indicated its willingness to consider a number of issues for the future, including a possible review of the operations of the taxi licensing section to be carried out by external consultants."


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