Labour Councillors have demanded a vote on proposals to give residents a voice at Planning Committee meetings. The vote will take place at the next Westminster City Council meeting on Wednesday 29th April when the following Labour motion will be debated;
“This Council agrees to allow the public to speak at the weekly Westminster Planning Committee meetings – in the same way as the public are allowed to speak at practically every other Planning Committee in London and the rest of the UK. This would be a small but significant step forward in the process of restoring public confidence in local democracy in Westminster.
Adopting this simple and straightforward change in the way in which Planning Committee meetings operate will enable those residents most directly affected by planning proposals (and those promoting them) to state their case directly to the Committee members when applications are being determined.
The Council appreciates that, given the high volume of planning applications received by the Council, introducing speaking rights for the public needs careful thought. However, we believe that this can be managed without difficulty as it is in other inner London boroughs and the Council hereby instructs Officers to report on how the detail of this can be implemented.”
Councillor Paul Dimoldenberg, Leader of the Labour Group said;
“It is time for Westminster Council to give residents a say at Planning Committee meetings. For too long residents have been denied a voice when proposed changes to their local environment are being decided. It would help inform decision making to hear from both residents and applicants when contentious proposals are being considered”