Councillors will no longer decide who can drive a taxi and who cannot.

Kirklees Council has become the last local authority in West Yorkshire to take the power away from elected members.

The decision to pass the authority to Kirklees Council’s employed licensing officials comes after the Examiner revealed councillors had overruled some recommendations to bar convicted criminals from driving taxis.

Early last year it was confirmed that a violent killer and drug dealer had been sanctioned to work as a taxi driver in Kirklees.

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Then last November Clr Michael Watson told the Examiner that at a meeting to review five drivers’ conduct, all but one were given the all clear, contrary to advice by council officers.

It is thought one had a conviction for assault while others had committed motoring offences.

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Those present at a full meeting of the council on Wednesday evening were told it was time to fall in line with neighbours, Wakefield, Calderdale, Bradford and Leeds.

The policy change comes amid a huge shake-up of taxi regulations, allowing drivers from any area to operate in Kirklees.

But the new law gives no scope for Kirklees to regulate drivers from other areas.

West Yorkshire’s councils have agreed to work together in a bid to offer identical standards across the region.