UKIP Councillors would seek to introduce the devolution of local planning decisions to parish councils in the borough.
We believe that local decision making should be as close to residents as possible and that parish councils (and in the case of Wellington and Newport, the town council) should make decisions on local issues. Telford & Wrekin Council currently has little respect for the views of parish councils when it comes to planning applications, disregarding the opinions of the elected representatives who know their local area and the people in it best and we want to change this.
The law currently doesn’t allow Telford & Wrekin Council to delegate planning to parish councils so we would achieve our aim by way of a revised planning policy that states that the borough council will only make a planning decision that disagrees with a parish council (or the town council in Wellington and Newport) if the application is contentious or of strategic importance.
If this change proves to be popular with residents and makes the planning process fairer and more accountable as we anticipate, we would lobby the British government for an amendment to the Local Government Act 2000 to allow the joint exercise of statutory functions between local authorities and parish and town councils within their boundary. This would allow for the formal delegation of planning decisions (and other decision making and service delivery) whilst allowing Telford & Wrekin Council to maintain overall control of the decision making process.