NautaDutilh acted as legal representative of the Municipality of Amsterdam in approximately 100 procedures initiated by nearly all commercial sightseeing boat operators in Amsterdam: 23 operators appealed against 130 municipal decisions to amend commercial operating licences for 144 sightseeing boats and 100 paddle boats. After nine court days and 36 hours of pleading, the administrative court of Amsterdam on 5 August 2015 ruled that the appeals were unfounded.
Since the first Amsterdam policy for commercial passenger transport by water in 1948, the traffic on the canals of Amsterdam has increased. The market has been locked with new entrants having virtually no chance of obtaining a license. The Municipality of Amsterdam implemented new policy in 2013 aiming to improve the quality and composition of passenger transport and to facilitate more variety in the canals. To that end certain categories of operating licenses have been amended. Large sightseeing boats no longer have licenses for an undetermined period of time and must enter into regular auctions in order to obtain a license. The court found the new policy and the amendment of the licenses to be in line with the law and general legal principles. The court also deemed the transitional period of six years appropriate for the operators to adjust to the new situation.
Saskia Nuijten and Harald Wiersema assist de Municipality of Amsterdam in these procedures.
Please read the press report on www.parool.nl (only available in Dutch).