MPS WARN ON DANGER TO DEMOCRACY FROM PLANNING VACUUM
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MPS WARN ON DANGER TO DEMOCRACY FROM PLANNING VACUUM

Mid Worcestershire MP Sir Peter Luff and West Worcestershire MP Harriett Baldwin have met with the country’s chief planning inspector to ask him for advice on the how to speed up approval of the South Worcestershire Development Plan.
The two MPs meet with Sir Michael Pitt in Westminster last week (January 30) and asked him to ensure that the South Worcestershire Development Plan process was not being hit by delays caused by the Inspectorate.

Both MPs warned the inspector that delays were slowing locally agreed development while triggering speculative developments and disagreements with developers in other sites.

Sir Michael said that local Planning Inspectors were working hard to approve local plans as quickly as possible and that he had recruited 50 extra staff to ensure that a bottleneck of local plans across the country get approved as quickly as possible.

He agreed that developers have an incentive to delay local plans because they can use the extra time to apply for permission on other sites they have optioned.

Sir Peter said,

“We impressed upon Sir Michael the damage being done to local confidence in the democratic process by the unacceptable delays in approving out local plan and he clearly understood the point. I hope our action will bring forward the date at which the local plan is approved and proper democratic control is restored to planning in South Worcestershire.”

Harriett commented,

“I was eager to meet the Chief Planning Inspector to see if he can speed up approval of the South Worcestershire Development Plan and end this speculative rash of housing applications in unapproved areas.

“I was also eager to make the point that this plan has been democratically approved by three district councils and that the judicial inspection by the local Planning Inspector seems to be taking a very long time.

“I agree with Sir Michael that the sooner the local plan can be given a significant weight in planning appeals the better as it will help local jobs and growth and reflect our local, democratically agreed plans for the area.”

ENDS


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