Bude Community Network Report
23 July 2015
Bude Community Network Meeting - Monday 20th July 2015
What a jam-packed meeting. The main focus was planning permission for this meeting. We were joined by Phil Mason - Head of Planning and Environment, and Edwina Hannaford - Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Planning.
They have been going around to all 19 of the community networks in Cornwall and we were meeting number 17. The benefit of this being is that most questions have already been asked and answered, and changes in the pipeline. Some of the changes that are afoot are:
Communication to be improved between officers and parish councils and just in general. They have devised an improvement plan for enforcement action.
The Council are producing a number of factsheets to help people; for example making a comment on a planning application with what is and what isn’t a planning consideration, in the National Policy Framework set by Government.
Town and Parish Councils will in future be notified of Non-Material Amendment Planning Applications and will be given 2 weeks on which to comment on them if they wish. A request was also made for notification of the Pre-Application Enquiries in the same manner of notification and will be considered.
There are plans to make the planning system paperless - this was due to go ahead in September - this has now been delayed as councils need more time to be able to prepare for this in purchase of projectors etc so that all councillors can see the plans at meetings.
Louise Dwelly - Cornwall Strategic Affordable Housing Manager also attended the meeting. She and her team have a broad remit and their job is to maximise the number of affordable homes. This can range from dealing with installation of bat boxes to how to spend a multi-million pound budget on new affordable homes. One of the things that I found interesting was the quashing of the rumour that councils ‘up-country’ pay Cornwall Council to build houses to get rid of some of their population. I had believed that to be true until last night but when you think about it - its a pretty expensive county to send everyone to!
Richard Martin - Office of Police and Crime Commissioner attended again. He gave a short talk on the ‘Fair Funding for Devon & Cornwall Police’ scheme. The Police and Crime Commissioner are campaigning for the cake to be shared more fairly - not for more money. When we pay our council tax a portion of that is to cover policing costs. However - Devon and Cornwall pay 39% of this bill, in London for example residents pay 27%. Yet more policing happens in London and there is no accounting in the ‘formula’ for our rurality, influx of visitors through tourism, 500 miles of coastline, or vulnerability.
Please visit www.devonandcornwall-pcc.gov.uk to sign the petition - they ask that you only sign once. I will see if I can get one of the petition sheets somewhere that it can be easily accessible to anyone who would like to sign a paper copy.