Venue: Council Chamber, Town Hall
Contact: Matthew Pawlyszyn Email: email@example.com
Appointment of Chair for the Meeting
Resolved: That Councillor Alistair Bradley be appointed Chair for the meeting.
Welcome by Chair and Introductions
The Chair, Councillor Alistair Bradley welcomed everyone to the meeting.
Apologies for absence
There were no apologies.
To agree the minutes of the last meeting as an accurate record for signing by the Chair.
County Councillor Michael Green wanted it clarified that his apologies were recorded for the last meeting, however due to a fault with the technology at Preston City Council, he was unable to gain access to the meeting.
Resolved: That the minutes of the meeting be approved as a correct record with the above clarification.
Declarations of Interest
Members are reminded of their responsibility to declare any pecuniary interest in respect of matters contained in this agenda.
If you have a pecuniary interest you must withdraw from the meeting. Normally you should leave the room before the business starts to be discussed. You do, however, have the same right to speak as a member of the public and may remain in the room to enable you to exercise that right and then leave immediately. In either case you must not seek to improperly influence a decision on the matter.
There were no declarations.
Report of the Planning Policy Manager to follow.
Carolyn Williams Planning Policy Manager at Preston City Council presented the report, which provided an update from the biodiversity net gain (BNG) Consultation that ran for 12 weeks in January 2022.
- Any outline planning permission granted before the introduction of the regulations do not need to abide with BNG, however any significant variation to previously permission would. Every application would be required to submit biodiversity net gain plans.
- The current date for implementation was November 2023, however there was an extended transition time for small sites and for Local Authorities to gain familiarity with the system.
- BNG would apply to Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects (NSIPs), however, due to the complexity, the transition period would continue until November 2025.
- Preventative action to take place to stop the removal of habitats prior to ecological assessments.
- Incentives to be offered to favour on-site gains, if not possible, off-site gains should be as close to the site as possible. Members raised concern should developers skirt off-site gains similar to social housing responsibilities.
- Biodiversity gains to be supported for 30 years, with options available for sites to reapply for additional support.
- Sites could be put forward by local authorities, but not mandate where credits were placed. Sites would be assessed by ecologists.
- Sites can overdeliver biodiversity but required to be planned from the conception of the application. The additional biodiversity gain could be allocated to other sites. Sites cannot retroactively overdeliver.
Further information and guidance was outstanding for considerable parts from the consultation, these included;
- The definition of ‘irreplaceable habitats’ and the legislation for the application of the 10% net gain for replaceable habitats.
- Guidance to be published to detail what planning authorities and local authorities should take into consideration to secure biodiversity net gain.
- Regulations to be implemented that detailed eligibility and to prevent the registration of duplicated sites. Natural England’s role was to sell the credits on behalf of the Secretary of State, administer the habit register for BNG sites and supervise and manage the list of sites.
- How on and off-site biodiversity gains would be reported.
Resolved: that the report be noted
Report of the Head of Spatial Planning attached.
Katherine Greenwood, Principal Planning Officer, presented and summarised the report.
The key points:
- The consultation received 930 responses, 694 through Citizenspace, 236 were received via email or handwritten letter. It was noted that digital responses were favoured due to the time requirement to decipher, appropriately categorise and analyse each written response.
- 42 Call For Sites submissions were received and to be assessed by the SHEELA process.
- Drop in events were held, although attendance varied based on location, and what had been proposed.
o 18 in Chorley attended by 504 people
o 6 in Preston attended by 128 people
o 5 in South Ribble attended by 182 people
- All statutory consultees were invited to engage in a formal Duty to Cooperate meeting.
- The next step was to analyse the representations through clear methodology to inform the preparation of the Preferred Options Part One Consultation Outcomes Report and the continuation of the plan preparation.
- The Planning Inspector required due diligence through the process and the representations could be reviewed to ensure the consultation was effective.
Members fed back and praised the team for the hard work conducted, and the need for written representations was highlighted and was understood to be a learning process. It was also noted that there had been numerous reports of residents and some Members that struggled to fill in the consultation, and raised the warning that it was likely that the age group that was most likely to have the time and will to complete the consultation would be the age group most likely to struggle completing it on the digital platform.
Resolved: That the report be noted.
Presentation to be provided by Philippa Lane,Planning Policy & Housing Officer.
Phillipa Lane, Planning Policy & Housing Officer presented to the Committee and provided an overview of negotiated stopping, what it was, and how it worked.
Information requested from members included
- The list of maintained sites were either due to be developed or vacant brownfields. Not all sites were permanent, some would be available for a limited amount of time. Every site would be deemed suitable by an Officer.
- The sites would be under the same level of enforcement, if negotiation failed, there was no alternate provision.
- It was highlighted that organisations such as the Leeds Gypsy and Traveller Exchange (GATE) could be engaged with, and to assist with the Travellers that entered the area without connection to the area and were passing through.
The next steps;
- Explore the working of transit policy and identify within the local plan suitable sites for the 15 year period.
- The sites selected and proposed to feature within the three Local Plan Working groups to gain views and consensus.
- Seek the views of the County Council in relation to their Traveller provision.
Resolved: That the update be noted.
Dates of Future Meetings
The following dates are proposed for the 2023/24 municipal year:
· 6.30pm Tuesday 20 June 2023
· 6.30pm Tuesday 3 October 2023
· 6.30pm Monday 4 December 2023
· 6.30pm Wednesday 7 February 2024
· 6.30pm Thursday 28 March 2024
The following dates were proposed for the 2023/24 municipal year
- Tuesday 20 June 2023, 6:30pm at South Ribble Borough Council
- Tuesday 3 October 2023, 6:30pm at Preston City Council
- Monday 4 December 2023, 6:30pm at Chorley Borough Council
- Wednesday 7 February 2024, 6:30pm at South Ribble Borough Council
- Thursday 28 March 2024, 6:30pm at Preston City Council.