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Liberal Democrats move to protect and enhance residents’ planning rights

October 14, 2021 11:00 AM

Cllr Christine McHughAt a meeting of Full Council last night (13th October), Bedford Borough Liberal Democrats secured a commitment to review the council's planning procedures to protect residents', councillors' and parish council voices in planning decisions.

Liberal Democrat Group Leader Councillor Christine McHugh moved a proposal to review the issue of 'reserved matters' for large planning applications which can't come to the Council's Planning Committee.

Talking about her motion Councillor McHugh said: "This is an important tidying up of the current Scheme of Delegation for Planning, but in the process, it has become clear that 'reserved matters' can at times leave residents, councillors and parish councils feeling left out of the planning process."

Liberal Democrat and Portfolio Holder for Town Centres Councillor Henry Vann welcomed Cllr McHugh's proposal saying: "The notion of an outline planning application with barely any detail never being considered at Planning Committee while long-standing, in our view, does not strike the right balance. We want to work towards a better balance that has public discussion on the key issues for neighbouring communities. This is a welcome proposal to review a further element of the Council's Scheme of Delegation and look to ensure that residents', councillors' and parish council voices continue to be protected and even further enhanced within the planning process."