CoVop is a national alliance set up to provide communities with an effective voice on planning, here is a section of an email from them……
Good to know we are not alone and the fight to save our green belt is getting to be a national and political hot potato
We had a CoVoP committee meeting on Sunday and seem to have a lot going on nationally at the moment. We’re sure that you know about much of it but just in case you don’t:
- Community and Local Government Inquiry into the operation of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF)
The committee has received over 200 written submissions (many from our affiliates and their members) which are available on their website – see links on our page in the “News” section http://covop.org/inquiry/ . They are now starting to take oral evidence and the first session was Monday 9 June – you can find a recording via our page on the enquiry. We are in contact with them to see if we can provide oral evidence on behalf of community groups in a future session.
- Greg Mulholland’s Bill for amendment of the NPPF
This private members bill has lapsed due to the shortage of parliamentary time but Greg is currently organising a roundtable for groups who share such a vision for the future of our planning system. The aim of the roundtable event is to make clear to both the current and next government the planning issues they must tackle. We will be attending the event.
- All-Party Parliamentary Group on the Greenbelt
This group was set up last year by Chris Skidmore and was due to publish a report in spring of this year – as spring is now officially over we are trying to find out exactly what this group is doing and how we can influence their activities.
- All political parties are now in election fever
With the elections now less than a year away, all parties are now focusing on how to win the next election. We are strictly non-party-political but feel that all of the major parties can be tarred with the same brush. They are not listening to the views on the voters when they are told that the planning system is not working – localism doesn’t exist and developers are running riot all over the country. With the current status of the planning laws, developers can obtain planning permission to build almost anywhere and then have the possibility of land banking while they obtain additional permissions. More houses will be built in the countryside and small towns and not where the real need is which is in the large employment centres. This will increase carbon emissions as more people have to travel longer to work. The NPPF talks about well-being, environment, infrastructure and sustainability, which are all good things. However, in reality the only thing being considered is whether the LPA have a five year supply, or not.