Who's in charge?
PUBLISHED: 11:25 25 February 2010 | UPDATED: 14:56 06 May 2010
SIR - Regarding Robert Wareing s letter (Herts Advertiser, February 11) concerning the growing threat of massive housing proposals in our area (what he picturesquely calls the SAD Monstrosity ) I have now been notified that the appeal hearing over the mo
SIR - Regarding Robert Wareing's letter (Herts Advertiser, February 11) concerning the growing threat of massive housing proposals in our area (what he picturesquely calls 'the SAD Monstrosity') I have now been notified that the appeal hearing over the most recent plan to build on the King Harry Lane playing fields will be held in tiny Committee Room One at the council offices on March 11 at 10am, and the Inspector may exercise his discretion and let me speak to the meeting.
At the last planning meeting (September 21 last year) the one thing all the councillors who voted agreed on was that planning permission should not be granted and that £1.6 million should not be merely handed over to the Local Highways Authority by the developer with no strings attached, no obligation to provide a viable solution to the besetting traffic problem at the King Harry Lane.
But now in their grounds of appeal statement, the developer blithely asserts that "a mitigation package has been agreed with the Local Highways Authority to deal with the impact of the proposed development at the King Harry Lane junction and it has been accepted by officers of the district council in their report to the Committee September 21 2009." (We will disregard the fact that the developers then back up this statement with a "quote" from the report which in fact exists nowhere in the report.)
The crucial issue here is "Who are the bosses in the council?" The acceptance of the £1.6million by the officers was specifically rejected by the councillors at the planning meeting of September 21.
If the officers have the last word then the elected councillors and we citizens who elect them might as well pack up and go home.
Chairman, Verulam Residents Association