Changes to planning meetings on cards for East Lindsey

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A shake-up is on the cards for how East Lindsey District Council runs planning committee meetings.

At present, applicants and objectors are allotted three minutes each if they wish to address the committee.

But in future, they will also be subject to quizzing by councillors for up to 10 minutes at a time.

In another change, town and parish council representatives will also be given the opportunity to address the committee on applications relating to their locations.

Controversially, meetings will also be audio-recorded and made available on ELDC’s website.

Portfolio holder with responsibility for planning Coun Craig Leyland said the new format was based on that adopted by other local authorities, including North Kesteven District Council.

“This initiative is in line with the council’s objective of enabling people to get actively involved in their communities,” he said.

“It will also keep residents better informed about how decisions are made.”

But many members of the planning committee protested that they had not been consulted in advance.

At a full meeting of ELDC, Coun Ed Mossop said the revamp was ‘fraught with dangers’.

Coun Terry Aldridge predicted: “This will be a complete mess!”

Coun Neil Cooper, who is chairman of the planning committee, said he would have welcomed the opportunities to discuss the proposal in order to ‘iron out any technicalities’. “However, we will do our best to ensure the new system works,” he added.

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