Agenda and minutes
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The Chairman explained that the meeting would be conducted in accordance with the Local Authorities and Police and Crime Panel (Coronavirus) (Flexibility of Local Authority Police and Crime Panel Meetings) (England and Wales) Regulations 2020 No. 392.
The Chairman welcomed all Members, officers and members of the public to the meeting.
Declarations of Interest
Councillors should not act or take decisions in order to gain financial or other material benefits for themselves or their spouse, civil partner or person with whom they are living with as a spouse or civil partner. They must declare and resolve any interests and relationships.
The Chairman will ask Members if they have any interests to declare in respect of items on this agenda, under the following headings:
(a) Disclosable Pecuniary Interests (DPI) under the Localism Act 2011. The nature as well as the existence of any such interest must be declared. After declaring a DPI, the Member must leave the meeting and not take part in the discussion or vote. This applies even if there is provision for public speaking.
(b) Disclosable Non Pecuniary (DNPI) under the Code of Conduct adopted by the Council in May 2012. The nature as well as the existence of any such interest must be declared. After declaring a DNPI interest, the Member may stay, speak and vote on the matter.
(c) Where it is possible that a fair-minded and informed observer, having considered the facts would conclude that there was a real possibility that the Member might be predetermined or biased the Member should declare their predetermination or bias and then leave the meeting while that item is considered.
Advice to Members: If any Councillor has any doubt about the existence or nature of any DPI or DNPI which he/she may have in any item on this agenda, he/she should seek advice from the Monitoring Officer, the Head of Legal or from other Solicitors in Legal Services as early as possible, and in advance of the Meeting.
No interests were declared.
Post meeting note: At the meeting the Planner advised that there were some errors in Map IV (Proposed designations – Sittingbourne area). The amended map was published on 4 November 2020.
The Head of Planning Services reported that following the call for sites, they had received 111 new Local Green Space site requests. It had not been possible to review all the suggested new sites, due to time constraints and resources which had to be focused on the Local Plan Review (LPR). The Head of Planning Services advised that it would not therefore be possible to complete the exercise for consideration at the Local Panel meeting scheduled for 19 November 2020 and requested the following addition to the recommendation in the report: That delegation be given to the Head of Planning Services in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Planning and the Deputy Cabinet Member for Planning to agree on the assessment of the proposed Local Green Spaces for inclusion in the Draft Local Plan to be presented to Cabinet on Wednesday 16 December 2020.
The Planner introduced the report and explained that as the Council were reviewing their Local Plan, it allowed the Council to designate Local Green Spaces which he explained afforded significant protection for green areas which were of particularly importance to local communities. The Planner reported that 112 sites were already designated within the current Local Plan and it was intended to carry those sites forward in the LPR.
The Planner drew attention to the maps attached at appendices I to VI in the report and said that some sites had been missed. He reported that revised maps would be emailed to Members and published on the website in the following week. The Planner explained that the sites would then need to be assessed in-line with the criteria set-out in the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) so a short-list of sites could be compiled. Members were also asked to review existing and new sites in their wards and email their comments to officers.
Members were invited to ask questions.
A Member raised concern that the document was being rushed and was concerned that Members were not being given sufficient detail to consider the sites. He was also concerned that some sites seemed quite large and requested that a list of what might or might not be acceptable be circulated to Members.
The Planner agreed to circulate the necessary guidance to assist Members when considering sites.
(1) That the contents of the report and the site which have been submitted as proposed Local Green Spaces be noted.
(2) That all Members be asked to review the existing sites and those which have been submitted in their Wards and provide any comments on the manner in which they consider them to meet (or not) the assessment criteria.
(3) That delegation be given to the Head of Planning Services in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Planning and the Deputy Cabinet Member for Planning to agree on the assessment of the proposed Local Green Spaces for inclusion in the Draft Local Plan to be presented to Cabinet at their meeting on Wednesday 16 December 2020.
Report published 23 October 2020.
The Planning Policy Manager introduced the report and stated that the Local Plan Review (LPR) would need to include additional land to meet the development needs of the Borough for the period 2022 to 2038, above that which was already included in the current Local Plan ‘Bearing Fruits’. She reminded the Panel that at their meeting in July 2020, they had provided a steer on the broad development strategy and had agreed Option C, which sought to deliver a more even distribution of the total development needs overall for both Bearing Fruits and the LPR. That steer had allowed officers to “funnel” the list of sites which had been promoted for development through the call for sites process.
The Planning Policy Manager advised that officers had focused on sites in sustainable locations first e.g. sites within or adjacent to towns, rural local service centres, and settlements with a train station. In terms of numbers, the Planning Policy Manager advised that they had been working to a figure of 10,000 dwellings. She reported that latest data had demonstrated that approximately 1,000 dwellings had been delivered as windfall sites over and above those contained within Bearing Fruits. Therefore, they were seeking to identify enough land for a minimum of 9,000 new dwellings plus provision for approximately 41 hectares of employment land. The Planning Policy Manager stressed the importance of progressing with a Plan that met the development needs of the Borough, in order to achieve a sound Local Plan.
The Planning Policy Manager explained that once officers had a list of preferred sites, they would complete remaining evidence which would then be shared with infrastructure providers and there requirements would be included in the draft document which would be presented to Panel in December 2020.
The Chairman stated that Members were required to allocate sites to fit into the broad settlement strategy which had been agreed by Cabinet. Members then considered each recommendation as set-out in the report.
The Chairman introduced recommendation 3.4 in the report and invited Members to ask questions and make comments.
There were no comments.
(1) That the South East Faversham site be endorsed and the remaining three strategic sites options be rejected as they did not support the delivery of the LPR development strategy as agreed as ‘option c’ at the Local Plan Panel meeting on 30 July 2020.
The Chairman introduced recommendation 3.13 in the report and invited Members to ask questions and make comments.
· How sure were officers that the Rushenden South site and the park homes accommodation were deliverable? And what were the consequences if they were not?
· concerned that if these sites were not deliverable then more housing might be needed towards Faversham;
· major concerns that there were too many constraints on the Rushenden South site;
· concerned with the document as a whole, and considered that the Council would find it very difficult to support some of the proposed sites at the inspection stage;
· considered there were better sites that ... view the full minutes text for item 223.