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Agenda Item No.

 

THE VALE OF GLAMORGAN COUNCIL

 

PLANNING COMMITTEE: 2ND FEBRUARY, 2012

 

REFERENCE FROM CABINET: 4TH JANUARY, 2012

 

 

C1575        WELSH GOVERNMENT (WG) CONSULTATION REGARDING A STRATEGIC MONITORING FRAMEWORK FOR THE PLANNING SYSTEM (PT) (SCRUTINY - ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT) -

 

Cabinet was requested to consider and approve the Council’s response to a consultation by the Welsh Government (WG) on the introduction of a new strategic monitoring framework for the Planning System.

 

In 2009, the then Welsh Assembly Government (WAG), published the sustainable Development Scheme One Wales: One Planet which set out its vision of a sustainable Wales.  It identified the planning system as one of the four key elements that underpinned the delivery of sustainable development in Wales.  In this document the WAG advised that it would:

 

“initiate, in consultation with local government, a strategic monitoring framework to measure key sustainable development outcomes delivered by the planning system”.

 

The WG had now commissioned research to help decide how this strategic monitoring framework could be implemented.  The research had been completed and the WG was now consulting on a strategic monitoring framework to measure the contribution the planning system made to their vision of a sustainable Wales.

 

The WG was seeking the views of Local Planning Authorities on:

 

·                    their approach to measuring the contribution of the planning system to the vision of a sustainable Wales

·                    each of the proposed indicators

·                    the phasing and reporting levels of the new framework

·                    the consolidation of existing measures

·                    the impacts on Local Planning Authorities

·                    the reporting arrangements for the framework.

 

Appendix A to the report set out a proposed substantive response from the Council. 

 

The response advised that in general terms, the extremely onerous additional recording, surveying and statistical analysis proposed in the consultation was ill advised given the likely staffing and financial implications, at this time of competing priorities and financial restraint.

 

Moreover, it was recommended that the vast majority of the information being sought could be obtained from slight amendments to existing returns, rather than seeking whole scale new tranches of statistics to be provided as part of a completely new statistical return.

 

In some cases, the information was not and could not be recorded by the Council and in other cases, it appeared that WG was expecting the Council to assume the responsibility for reporting information that was previously undertaken by other agencies.

 

Overall, the consultation response advised that the proposals appeared an unfair and unnecessary burden on Local Councils and would generate significantly higher work load at a time when Local Planning Authorities were faced with competing priorities and meeting existing targets with reduced budgets.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED -

 

(1)       T H A T the content of the report be noted, and the response attached at Appendix A to the report be approved, and that the response be forwarded to the Welsh Government in response to the consultation exercise.

 

(2)       T H A T a copy of the report be forwarded to the Planning Committee for information purposes.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)       To enable the Council to respond to the consultation exercise.

 

(2)       To keep Planning Committee informed of the response to the consultation.”

 

 

 

Attached as Appendix - Report to Cabinet: 4th January 2012

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