Decisions at Executive meeting – 4 December 2017Published Friday 8 December 2017
The outcomes of items considered at Harborough District Council’s Executive meeting on Monday 4 December 2017.
Councillors approved changes to the policy which sets out who is eligible to join the social housing register and who is given priority for housing. The changes aim to ensure housing allocations are fair and effective. Changes include making sure the tenant has a strong connection to the Harborough district, ensuring there is a housing need and the applicant is able to afford the housing provided.
A new timetable for the Local Plan was approved to take into account the extension of the recent public consultation and to allow councillors adequate time to consider the outcomes of this. The extension of the consultation period, by two weeks, was considered necessary to ensure residents had sufficient time to consider the significant amount of information and supporting documents relating to the Local Plan.
Local Plan Work Programme Timetable Key Milestones:
- Submission of the Local Plan for Public Examination – March 2018
- Examination Hearings – June/July 2018
- Receipt of Final Inspector’s Report – October/November 2018
- Adopt the Plan – November / December 2018
Councillors recommended that the countywide Strategic Growth Plan should be published for a 12-week public consultation in the new year. The draft strategy aims to enable councils in Leicestershire to plan and manage future housing growth, as well as support decision making concerning the roads, transport and other infrastructure required to secure government funding and protect environmental and historic areas. The Strategic Growth Plan has been prepared jointly by ten partner organisations in Leicestershire – ie. all seven of the local planning authorities, the County Council as highway authority, the City Council as a unitary authority with combined planning and highways responsibilities, and the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership. The plan sets out a strategy for the growth and development of Leicester & Leicestershire in the period to 2050. At the same meeting, councillors approved the signing of the ‘Joint Statement of Cooperation’ which recognises a positive commitment from Harborough District to work together with other councils across the Leicestershire on a Strategic Growth Plan.
Revisions to the council’s planning obligations, with regard to section 106 developer contributions to the community, to allow for a fairer approach were approved by councillors. These changes included introducing a more flexible approach to fees charged to developers so that they reflected the amount of time that the Council spent on section 106 agreements – including a new hourly rate.
Councillors agreed that, following an independent examiner’s report, the proposed Great Easton Neighbourhood Plan should progress to a referendum to be held in the village on Thursday 25 January 2018. Whilst a neighbourhood plan cannot be used to prevent otherwise sustainable or appropriate development, communities can use it to help choose where they want new homes, shops and offices to be built, have their say on what those new buildings should look like, and grant planning permission for the new buildings they want to see go ahead.
A vision to help people across the Harborough district live more healthy and active lifestyles – now and in the future – has been approved. Harborough District Council’s Physical Activity Strategy – part of the council’s ‘Healthy Harborough’ vision – sets out the council’s commitment to helping build active communities through sport and recreation in towns and villages across the district. It will also help the district lead the way in sporting activity by maximising links with parishes, sports clubs and schools to provide more venues for physical activity, increasing funding opportunities from a range of sources, and improving the council’s existing leisure centres. More than 2,300 people took part in the council’s leisure consultation over the summer. These responses have fed directly into the strategy. The Physical Activity Strategy will be rolled out in January 2018.
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