At its meeting on 22 June 2017, the council’s cabinet will be asked to approve for consultation the latest draft of the Huntingdonshire Local Plan to 2036. This draft follows consultations on previous drafts of the Plan in 2013 and 2015, and an Additional Sites Consultation in 2016. Before being considered by the cabinet, the council’s Overview and Scrutiny Panel (Economy and Growth) will examine the latest draft at its meeting on 20 June 2017. The report for that meeting, including the draft Plan, will be published today (04 July 2017).
Cllr Roger Harrison, Executive Councillor for Growth, said: "This Plan has been informed by a series of studies including a Strategic Transport Study and flood risk, housing need and retail studies. It follows a number of previous rounds of consultation and takes account of the comments made on earlier drafts of the Plan. This Plan needs to be the most appropriate strategy to meet the current and future needs of our communities and businesses, and ensure Huntingdonshire remains a great place to live, work and invest.
"We are determined to submit the Plan by the government’s expected deadline of the end of March 2018, but believe this still allows time for a further opportunity for interested parties to comment on the proposals, as some have requested, before the Proposed Submission Draft version is prepared. It is to respond to these requests that we are proposing to carry out an additional round of consultation on the draft Plan now, before the Proposed Submission Draft of the Plan is finalised later in the year. A formal opportunity for the local community and other interested parties to consider the Local Plan will also be provided when the Proposed Submission Draft is finalised.
"The Proposed Submission Draft, when it is finalised, will be the version that the Local Planning Authority wishes to adopt. Alongside the consultation on the draft Plan, the Local Planning Authority is proposing to publish the studies that have informed it, a Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment June 2017, and a call for sites. Together these will ensure that the Proposed Submission Draft is not only based on up-to-date evidence, but is also informed by up-to-date comments from interested parties. Because we want to hear what people think, and conscious of the upcoming holiday season, we propose to extend the consultation period from the normal 6 weeks to 8 weeks."