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FRESH APPROACH TO DECISION-MAKING ON PLANNING APPLICATIONS

Smaller and householder planning applications that in recent years have
been discussed at Cambridge City Council’s area committees are set to
return to the council’s main planning committee.

A report published today sets out proposals to move consideration of
smaller planning applications and enforcement powers out of area
committees and back to the main planning committee.

Options for this single committee approach include new operating
principles such as structured meeting agendas, published start times for
specific parts of the meeting and a planned meeting cut-off time of 6pm.
The existing arrangements for public speaking and delegations will
remain. 

Cllr Kevin Blencowe, Executive Councillor for Planning Policy and
Transport, said: “Consolidating decision-making on planning
applications to a single main committee will help to ensure greater
consistency across the city. 

“The Guildhall is a fully accessible building in a central location
where our residents can engage with the planning committee process. The
council has successfully operated a single planning committee before and
I am confident that it can do so again. 

“Meetings can be organised and managed to address any concerns about
timing and there is an extra benefit for area committees because they
will be free to focus on the important local issues that are of wider
interest to our residents.”

Cllr Blencowe will decide on the recommendations in the report at
Environment Scrutiny Committee on 8 July. Full council would then need
to approve any changes at its meeting on 24 July. Any changes would take
effect from 1 October of this year.

Ends

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