Local democracy during coronavirus

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Issue - meetings

Review of the Council’s Statement of Community Involvement

Meeting: 22/10/2020 - Executive (Item 50)

50 Temporary Amendments to the Council's Statement of Community Involvement pdf icon PDF 449 KB

The Corporate Director of Economy & Place to present a report which seeks approval to make temporary amendments to the Council’s Statement of Community Involvement (SCI), to revise planning-related public access and involvement procedures in response to current social distancing restrictions as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved:  (i)      That the recommended temporary revisions to the council’s adopted SCI set out in Annex A, as revised to incorporate the changes requested by the Local Plan Working Group, and reflecting the specific requirements arising from national guidance and procedures on dealing with coronavirus implications, be approved.

 

                   (ii)      That officers be authorised to publish the covering note to the adopted SCI on the council’s website.

 

                   (iii)     That authority be delegated to the Corporate Director of Economy & Place, in consultation with the Executive Member for Economy & Strategic Planning, to approve the implementation of the revisions for a period of up to 6 months and, should the revisions remain in place after 6 months, to ask the Local Plan

Working Group to consider whether to recommend a further period of implementation.

 

Reason:     To ensure that consultation and engagement in the planning process remain effective at a time when restrictions have been placed on face to face social interactions to help combat the spread of coronavirus, and to provide some certainty as to the duration of the temporary amendments.

Minutes:

The Assistant Director of Planning & Public Protection presented a report which sought approval to make temporary amendments to the Council’s Statement of Community Involvement (SCI), to revise planning-related public access and involvement procedures in response to current social distancing restrictions as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

The recommendations of the Local Plan Working Group, following consideration of the report at their meeting on 20 October, had been circulated to Members.  These proposed some changes to the amendments to address concerns raised by the Group regarding non-digital access to documents, plus a review of the amendments after 6 months.

 

The draft temporary amendments, attached as Annex A to the report, set out the approach being taken to the commitments in the SCI during the pandemic.  They included the temporary suspension of face to face consultation events and provision of printed documents, and their replacement by alternative methods such as virtual meetings and social media, with advocates to be nominated for those without access to online consultation.  It was proposed that authority be delegated to the relevant Director and Executive Member to determine when the temporary arrangements would cease.

 

A revised version of Annex A, incorporating the changes recommended by the LPWG, had been circulated to Members.

 

Resolved:  (i)      That the recommended temporary revisions to the council’s adopted SCI set out in Annex A, as revised to incorporate the changes requested by the Local Plan Working Group, and reflecting the specific requirements arising from national guidance and procedures on dealing with coronavirus implications, be approved.

 

                   (ii)      That officers be authorised to publish the covering note to the adopted SCI on the council’s website.

 

                   (iii)     That authority be delegated to the Corporate Director of Economy & Place, in consultation with the Executive Member for Economy & Strategic Planning, to approve the implementation of the revisions for a period of up to 6 months and, should the revisions remain in place after 6 months, to ask the Local Plan Working Group to consider whether to recommend a further period of implementation.

 

Reason:     To ensure that consultation and engagement in the planning process remain effective at a time when restrictions have been placed on face to face social interactions to help combat the spread of coronavirus, and to provide some certainty as to the duration of the temporary amendments.


 

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