Report by Head of Place (attached).
The Committee considered a report by the Head of Place (circulated previously) regarding the review of the North Devon and Torridge Local Plan 2011-2031.
The Lead Officer Planning Officer highlighted the following:
· The North Devon and Torridge Local Plan 2011-2031 had been adopted by both District Councils on 29 October 2018. Since that time the local context for it had changed substantially across a number of key policy areas which warranted an early review.
· National planning policy required a review of a Local Plan to be completed within five years of its adoption, however local planning authorities were entitled to undertake an early review should they wish to do so.
· The Government’s consultation on proposed changes to the planning system in early 2020, set out a deadline of December 2023 for all local planning authorities to have an up-to-date local plan. The joint local plan would have been adopted over five years at that time and would not be considered as up-to-date at that point.
· The Joint Local Plan Working Group had endorsed the move towards a formal review of the Local Plan and it had been agreed that associated reports be prepared in parallel and consistent manner for consideration by both Councils.
· The first stage in reviewing the Local Plan required a formal decision by each Council to agree the fundamental principles as detailed in the report.
· Once the key principles had been agreed by both Councils, a range of actions would be required as part of the early stages of plan preparation as outlined in the report.
· Active engagement with all elected Members from both Councils would commence at an early stage to enable them to identify key issues and options to be addressed within a new Local Plan, whilst identifying any particular approaches, policies or policy gaps they wish to be considered.
RECOMMENDED that the Council:
Commit to working in partnership with Torridge District Council to carry out a comprehensive review and update of the North Devon and Torridge Local Plan on a joint basis;
Review the governance arrangements for the preparation of the Local Plan to ensure inclusive, effective and efficient oversight and engagement;
Review the Local Development Scheme in partnership with Torridge District Council;
Arrange Member workshops to enable early involvement in identifying key issues and potential options to be addressed through a new Local Plan.