Local Plan on course with no government intervention

Northumberland County Council has reaffirmed its commitment to producing a Local Plan in the shortest timescale possible - after it was confirmed the government would not be intervening in the process.

In November 2017 Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government Sajid Javid identified a number of local authorities which he felt had not made enough progress with their Local Plans and outlined the possibility of government intervention.

Last summer the new administration withdrew the previous Core Strategy in the light of serious public concerns and a lack of confidence it would ever have been approved.

Now the Secretary of State has confirmed there are no plans to intervene and has offered support to further accelerate production of the new Local Plan.

At current timescales, a draft Local Plan will be consulted on this summer, and a formal version, taking into account any necessary changes, published in winter 2018. The Plan will be submitted to Government for examination by Summer 2019 and, following examination, will be adopted by Summer 2020.

However Sajid Javid has asked the process is accelerated.

Council leader Peter Jackson said: “The people of Northumberland made it clear they had little confidence in the previous approach and I’m pleased that Sajid Javid has recognised our commitment to producing a sound and deliverable Local Plan and the progress we have already made.

“We have measures in place to ensure that plan production is prioritised and well resourced, and note the Secretary of State’s comments about streamlining the evidence base and accelerating the Plan preparation programme by up to three months.

“We welcome the offer of further support from the Planning Advisory Service to ensure we meet these revised timescales.”
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