Public Speaking: To register your intention to speak at a Council, Cabinet or Committee meeting, please contact Democratic Services on email@example.com or 01799 510410, 510548, 510369 or 510467. Panel, Forum and Working Group meetings do not generally permit public speaking. Please refer to a specific meeting's pdf agenda pack for further information and registration deadlines.
Live Broadcast: For Council, Cabinet and Committee meetings the video player will be available on this page under the Media banner a few minutes before the meeting is due to begin. Please note that Panel, Board, Forum and Working Group meetings are not generally broadcast on the website. The Council uses Zoom and Youtube to broadcast its meetings. Please note that Zoom and YouTube have their own privacy and data security policies, which can be accessed at www.zoom.us and www.youtube.com.
Venue: Council Chamber - Council Offices, London Road, Saffron Walden, CB11 4ER. View directions
Contact: Democratic Services Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Apologies for Absence and Declarations of Interest
To receive any apologies for absence and declarations of interest.
Apologies were received from Councillors Coote, Criscione, Jones, Lavelle and De Vries.
To consider the minutes of the previous meeting.
The minutes of the Scrutiny Committee (Local Plan) meeting held on 16 February 2021 were approved.
The Chair provided an update to the Committee following the Scrutiny Committee held on 17 June 2021, on the latest position in respect of accessing information on the Stansted Airport enquiry. He said that detailed responses were still outstanding. Councillor Evans said that he would be speaking to the Director of Public Services on this matter the following day.
To consider the Local Plan Quarter 1 Project Management report
Councillor Evans introduced the report. He said that he was pleased to report that matters were on track, good progress had been made since the last report and there were no work tasks currently being shown as ‘Red’. He said that the Local Plan Leadership Group was meeting on 24 June 2021 and that Housing Numbers requirements were to be discussed at the meeting.
The Local Plan Project Manager outlined the report and the appendices. He highlighted risks 2 and 17 in that a senior planner within the Policy Team was leaving and he said that an advert had been placed to recruit a replacement. He said that new risks 35 – 38 covered the management of the work of consultants. He referred to the Local Plan- Preferred Options Timetable that had been supported by the Leadership Group. He said that the Call for Sites period had now ended, that around 300 sites were being verified and logged and that 17 consultant studies were in various stages of procurement as shown on the Local Plan Workstream document that reported the overall RAG status as ‘Amber’. He also referred to the Project Plan Live Tasks document that showed all the tasks which had been or were due to be progressed within the current quarter.
Councillor LeCount said that he had recently had meetings with planning officers and was pleased that the plan was on-track. He referred to the Call for Sites that had identified around 300 sites and the fact that the evaluation would take six months. He suggested that some of the good sites could be identified and visited during those six months.
The Local Plan Project Manager explained that the 17 consultant technical studies were needed to provide the evidence base to inform the process. The Cabinet had recently agreed the draft vision and objectives for the new Local Plan. The next stage was to get a steer from members at the Local Plan Leadership Group and Cabinet on housing numbers, a settlement hierarchy and a Preliminary Outline Strategy . This would then allow officers to undertake an assessment of individual sites. He said that the timetable was ambitious and achievable.
In response to a question from the Chair, the Local Plan Project Manager said that evidence from the technical studies would be brought back to both the Local Plan Leadership Group (LPLG) and the Strategic Infrastructure Delivery Group (SIDG) in “bite-size chunks”, and this would be an opportunity for them to examine the evidence. He also reported that work was also taking place with Parish Councils.
The Chair asked Councillor Bagnall as Chair of the LPLG if he was comfortable with the proposed timetable. Councillor Bagnall said that he met regularly with the three lead officers and was comfortable with the timetable and the consultation at this stage.
In response to a further question from Councillor LeCount relating to “bite-size chunks”, the Local Plan Project Manager said that the difficulty was that none of the 300 sites identified ... view the full minutes text for item SC3