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Letter: Planning Decisions Require Knowledgeable Judgement

Published on: 25 Oct, 2022
Updated on: 25 Oct, 2022

From: Frances Porter

In response to: Planning Committee Councillor Displays Jaw-dropping Cluelessness

I still want to believe that councillors take the job to help their residents.

I am sure the planning committee members have lots of other duties but planning applications are such a huge impact on everyone’s daily life, they must be taken very seriously and they should always ensure they have fully read any application and the main objections.

Having sat through lots of planning meetings I am surprised at the questions asked by the councillors and the way they seem unaware of facts and had not asked the questions earlier, I always feel the planning officer just seems to say I think it is ok and they wave it through.

So let us be honest: when it comes to big developments planning officers can be swayed by a slick, convincing applicant and it all can go wrong.

Can we trust that the planning officer has checked all the facts and figures stated in the applications? Sadly the planning officer cannot have sufficient local knowledge to know the real effect of some of these developments.

I hope this issue has shed some light on the problems and that councillors will take the opportunity of any training they can be given and ensure they really are listening to their residents, not just going with the planning officer’s recommendation.

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