Planning committee is a significant investment of time and resources for most councils, and requires the close coordination of planning, democratic services and legal teams. It is an important shop window for the council and plays a crucial role in providing democratic and transparent decisions on sometimes controversial issues. (May 2020).
In response to Covid-19, we have created a "hints & tips" guide to running a virtual planning committee. It is early days, and we hope that you will help us update it with better advice once we get a few under our collective belts.
Accompanying the 'hints and tips' is a guide to help you revise your protocols and procedures for the mechanics of running a committee. You can use it as a starting point, and then localise it to reflect how your committee runs.
What are planners and politicians saying?
In our view it is essential that councils continue to run robust and legally sound processes. However alongside observing the letter of the law it is important to remember the spirit. It is not easy, but planning must continue to be transparent and fair. In this series of "fireside chats" Martin Hutchings talks to some of our councillor peers and officers to explore what is in their minds. We are very grateful to:
- Cllr Bryony Rudkin (Ipswich)
- Cllr Linda Robinson (Wychavon)
- Cllr Mike Haines (Teignbridge)
- Cllr Bill Stevens (Plymouth)
- Peter Ford (Plymouth)
- Cllr James Denselow (LB Brent)
- Gerry Ansell (LB Brent)
- Cllr Tricia O'Brien (Liverpool)
- Michael Jones (Liverpool)
Probity in planning: Advice for councillors and officers making planning decisions
This 2019 guidance is an update to the 2013 version of the Local Government Association’s Probity in Planning. It clarifies how councillors can get involved in planning discussions on plan making and on applications, on behalf of their communities in a fair, impartial and transparent way.