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Councillor B Deering, presiding as Chairman, referred to a number of housekeeping issues. He said that he was chairing this meeting as Councillor T Page had decided to step down as Chairman after 3.5 years in this role.
On behalf of the Development Management Committee, the Chairman expressed how impressed Members of the Committee had been by the way in which Councillor Page had fulfilled the role of Chairman. He said that Councillor Page had presided over his first meeting as Chairman on 25 May 2016 and he had been Chairman for 113 decisions made by the Committee.
Councillor Page had throughout this time attached great importance to the integrity of this Committee. He concluded that he believed this approach to be highly creditable and thanked Councillor Page for his service as Chairman.
Councillor T Page thanked the Chairman for his kind words and said that it had been a privilege to be Chairman of the Development Management Committee.
To confirm the Minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on Wednesday 6 November 2019.
Councillor B Crystall commented on some additional narrative he believed should be added to the Minutes of the 6 November meeting. The Chairman said he felt the minutes were a true record of the Committee’s decisions and that minutes were not meant to be a verbatim record. The Legal Services Manager endorsed this position.
Councillor D Andrews proposed and Councillor T Stowe seconded, a motion that the Minutes of the meeting held on 6 November 2019 be confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman. After being put to the meeting and a vote taken, this motion was declared CARRIED.
RESOLVED – that the Minutes of the meeting held on 6 November 2019, be confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.
Recommended for Approval
The Head of Planning and Building Control recommended that in respect of application 3/19/1856/HH, planning permission be granted subject to the conditions detailed in the report now submitted.
The Chairman reminded Members that application 3/19/1856/HH was before the Committee as the applicant was an Officer of the Authority. Councillor I Kemp referred to integrity and transparency and commended Officers for following industry best practice in submitting the application to Members for a decision.
Councillor Kemp said that the application appeared to be sensible and would have no impact on neighbours. He stated that he attached considerable weight to the fact that there had been no objections from neighbours.
It was moved by Councillor R Buckmaster and seconded by Councillor J Jones that application 3/19/1865/HH be granted subject to the conditions detailed in the report submitted. After being put to the meeting and a vote taken, this motion was declared CARRIED. The Committee accepted the recommendation of the Head of Planning and Building Control as now submitted.
RESOLVED – that in respect of application 3/19/1856/HH, planning permission be granted subject to the conditions detailed in the report.
(A) Appeals against refusal of Planning Permission/ non?determination.
(B) Planning Appeals Lodged.
(C) Planning Appeals: Inquiry and Informal Hearing Dates.
(D) Planning Statistics.
The Chairman said that the appeals information was very informative and was reflective of the significant workload that Officers received. He commented on the outcome of appeals and referred in particular to the good rate of appeals that were dismissed, i.e. where the decisions of the Authority were upheld by the planning inspectorate.
Councillor J Jones expressed his concern and disappointment that the appeal decisions in respect of the Great Hadham Golf and Country Club had been that the appeal was allowed.
RESOLVED – that the following reports be noted:
(A) Appeals against refusal of planning permission / non-determination;
(B) Planning Appeals lodged;
(C) Planning Appeals: Inquiry and Informal Hearing dates; and
(D) Planning Statistics.
Councillor D Andrews made a number of comments regarding a target set down in UK law that greenhouse gas emissions should be net zero by 2050. He said that 20% of those emissions came from buildings, namely housing.
Councillor Andrews said that Members of this Committee should keep this target in mind when carrying out their work, in the same way as Officers would be. He commented on the fact that a lot of East Herts housing could not be brought up to standard as it was heritage stock.
Councillor D Andrews referred to government future homes standards to reduce emissions from new housing by 75 – 80% by 2025. He encouraged Members to engage in training sessions or site visits to promote the driving down of emissions and the driving up of standards.
The Executive Member for Planning and Growth, the Leader and the Head of Planning and Building Control made a number of points in response to the comments made by Councillor Andrews. The Head acknowledged the possibility of some training in respect of Supplementary Planning Documents.