Council Set To Grab Back Planning Power

THURROCK TORIES have taken their first steps to snatching back planning powers away from the Thurrock Thames Gateway Development Corporation (DC).

It has been one of the key “loggerhead” stories in (Thurrock) local politics as the ruling conservative group have bitterly resented the DC having the final say on planning matters.

With the government undertaking a five year review of the DC, the Tories want to see more benefit to a more Thurrock-centric approach.

Leading the debate in Cabinet, Deputy Leader Amanda Arnold said: “This needs to be Thurrock-centred, whenever anything goes regional we seem to lose out.”

The Government is consulting on four general options: no change, returning powers to the council, the corporation becoming part of a regional organisation, or a totally new system.

The Tories agreed a transitional period would be set in place where the DC would continue, which will ensure certainty in the borough’s regeneration agenda and ensure that confidence is maintained in local delivery arrangements.

The council’s response to government also explains that it believes councillors should have a greater influence in planning matters during the transition period, also helping to ensure a smoother transfer to successor arrangements.

Both the council and the TTGDC have agreed to an independent review looking at the best way forward for medium/longer term regeneration in Thurrock.

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