The National Organisation of Residents Associations (NORA) has members from all over England and Wales, who in turn represent nearly two and half million
residents. Members are advised of Government Consultation Papers relevant to residents in order to discover their responses. A draft Response including all
their responses is circulated for their review before offering the NORA Response to Government. This practice justifies our claim to represent the views of
Members have two main issues about the White Paper, which proposes yet another change in the planning regime.It is considered that the intention of some of
the proposals introduce a fundamental change in the planning legislation, which may not be apposite.
NORA's perception of the proposed changes is that it is the intention to expedite the granting of more applications for the building of new housing and that
there is an intention that partiality is weighted in favour of developers to the detriment of local communities. This would, in effect, centralise the
NORA also is of the opinion that the proposed changes will produce some 300,000 new builds is based on erroneous data and this is borne out by figures that
the Office of National Statistics have published. Examination of these since 1949 show that the rise and fall in the number of new builds is determined by
the state of the national economy and there have been only seven years when the number of new builds has exceeded 200,000. There is no correlation between
the number built annually and the various relaxations of the planning regulations of the past decade. These have not, in NORA's submission, have had any
discernible effect on the number of new builds. Certain of the Permitted Development Rights have allowed, and will allow, inappropriate building of and
conversion of unsuitable accommodation and extensions which will lower standards and change the character of many local communities.
NORA is of the opinion that that the proposed changes within this consultation paper would, if implemented, result in a spate of applications below the
40-50 site affordable housing trigger. While this may, in the short-term, produce an increase in the supply of new houses, this may be at the expense of the
number of affordable houses. It is, therefore, to be of benefit to whomever owns the land, be it an individual or a developer. The potential home buyer
will be at a considerable disadvantage in this. NORA identifies that this reveals a defect in the Government's interpretation of the economics and the
relationship between house building and the value of land. In effect, this demonstrates that the processes of calculation are, at best, erroneous and at
worst, is completely misleading.
While it is highly desirable that there is a sufficiency in the number of homes available for the first-time buyer, there is a divergence between the price
of affordable homes and the market value of the housing that is too expensive for people of limited means.
In considering Permission in Principle, bigger sites pose greater complications and developers of these are more likely to elect to apply for outline
planning permissions. Permission in Principle will, for all intents and purposes, create a 'zonal system'. NORA considers that the implementation of these
centralised policies and the imposition of centralised policies and digitalisation, along with the removal of community involvement from key stages in the
planning regime is in breach of the Localism Act and undemocratic.NORA would cite the words contained in the (then) DCLG 'A plain English guide to the
Localism Act' published in November 2011: 'The Localism Act seeks to give effect to the Government's ambitions to decentralise power away from Whitehall and
back into the hands of local councils, communities and individuals to act on local priorities.' In this, it would appear that the centralised policies are
in conflict with the above Act. It is therefore queried whether the Act would be substantially revised or new legislation enacted. It is NORA's considered
view that Local Planning Authorities should encourage and promote the involvement of communities especially where there are established Residents
Associations and also be more cognisant of the observations submitted to them by individual residents when deciding the outcome of a planning application.
NORA would therefore challenge the proposed planning changes as it considers that they are unfit for purpose.
It is proposed that Local Plans should be visual and map-based, standardised, based on the latest digital technology, and supported by a new standard
template. NORA is in favour of this proposal. This would greatly simplify the procedure and would make the understanding of Local Plans easier for the
layman, i.e. residents, who are often discouraged by the voluminous documentation and technical terms contained therein.
The proposal that Local Authorities and the Planning Inspectorate will be required through legislation to meet a statutory timetable (of no more than
30 months in total) is welcomed. By limiting the amount of time to finalise and bring a Local Plan into operation, it will reduce considerably the present
protracted process which can extend over a period of years.NORA would also concur that decision-making should be faster and more certain.
Furthermore, the strengthening of enforcement powers and sanctions is also welcomed. The financial restraints presently being forced upon Local Planning
Authorities has resulted in a reduction of staffing in the Enforcement Departments and an inability to follow up on reports and discovery of not only
infringements of planning legislation but other contraventions allied to them. So far as the proposal that there is to be development of comprehensive
resources and skills strategies is concerned, it is noted that the Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government announced on the 5th November 2019
the establishment of a new expert advisory council dedicated to the digital transformation of the property sector. NORA welcomes this proposal. It would
draw attention to the Planning Portal website, which is far from 'user friendly' and is difficult to navigate.The development of a comprehensive resources
and skills strategy for the planning sector to support the implementation of the proposed reforms is noted.
RESPONSES to QUESTIONS
Question 1. What three words do you associate most with the planning system in England?
Response: It is difficult to understand what data might be extracted from this question. However, Complicated, specialised,
abstruse are suggested.
Question 2. Do you get involved with planning decisions in your local area?
Response: Yes. NORA and its members, who are Residents Associations and their resident members are so involved and these are an integral and important part
of the decision-making process.
Question 3. Our proposals will make it much easier to access plans and contribute your views to planning decisions. How would you like to find out about
plans and planning proposals in the future?
Response: Access to information on planning applications should be simple. Local Authorities’ Planning websites currently allow searches by weekly or
monthly lists of new applications which can be further filtered by Wards. Community bodies, such as Residents Associations or Amenity Societies, carry
out regular searches and inform their members accordingly by emails or by posting the information on their websites or by email, although some do not have
these. For the individual resident, who may not be a member of their Residents Association and who do not carry out their own personal searches, are at a
disadvantage, often only learning about planning applications in their immediate locality at the last minute or after a decision has been made.
It is suggested that Local Authorities introduce an 'alert' scheme, which registered subscribers would receive notifications on their devices of the latest
weekly or monthly lists. These should be by either text or email, which is universal and receivable on all devices. Additionally, a notice displaying
the details of the planning application should be posted on or near the subject property where the development is deemed to be of major importance or having
a major impact on the area.
All documentation contained in a planning application should be in the same format. The universally recognised format is the 'portable document format'
which is easily shared and printed. Today almost everyone has a version of Adobe Reader or other program on their computer or other device that can read
these files. However, for instance, correspondence is often in different messaging programs which are sometimes indecipherable unless that particular
program is installed. Therefore, all documents should be converted to PDF.
Social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube are not subscribed to by everyone and therefore they are unsuitable.
The Planning Portal: This is not user friendly and should be revamped. NORA members have complained that navigation to planning applications in their
area is difficult and that all documentation is required to be downloaded, saved and opened in the appropriate programme. This is time wasting and
inconvenient. This is especially applicable to those with devices that have limited storage. Documentation should be able to be viewed onscreen, with the option of downloading and saving. The present system presents problems where there are numerous documents, sometimes several hundred in the case of proposed major developments.
It should also be recognised that the use of internet accessible devices is not yet universal. We refer, also, to our observations in the answer to
Question 4. What are your top three priorities for planning in your local area?
Response: Protection of green spaces. The design of new homes and places. Supporting the high street. NORA would also add that the preservation of
historic and listed buildings is also of significant importance and that sympathetic and creative conversions and adaptations help preserve the significant
character of our towns and cities. By so doing, this would ensure continuing maintenance of these buildings and their use for the benefit of future
Question 5. Do you agree that Local Plans should be simplified in line with our proposals?
Response: No. The proposals for three kinds of land are poorly defined and would introduce differences of interpretation at the expense of the environment.
It is noted that while Local Plans will be retained, the consequence will be a significant reduction in latitude, the designation being decided in advance.
This would result in consent being granted for some development categories and thus the challenging of the Local Plan being made more difficult. There is
no real evidence that the present planning system inhibits house building and that 'zoning' will improve and curtail the current system.
Evidence in the public domain from the Local Government Association shows that 90% of planning applications are approved, while there are more than one
million homes with planning permission that are still to be built. The LGA analysis found 2,564,600 units had been given planning permission since 2009-10
and that 1,530.680 had been constructed and the number of granted planning permissions for new homes in England almost doubled between 2012-13 and 2018-19
from 198,800 to 316,180.This, it is argued, means that Local Authorities were not the block to the Government's target of creating 300,000 new homes per
year. Evidence of this exists at local Borough Council level nationally. The planning system, as it exists presently, gives developers more than enough
'tools' to do the job but they are not fulfilling their part of the deal by delivering on permissions.
Question 6. Do you agree with our proposals for streamlining the development management content of Local Plans, and setting out general development
management policies nationally?
Response: There is a great diversity of environments and therefore, it would be inadvisable and unworkable to impose a
standard, 'one size fits all' across the board.
Proposal 3: Local Plans should be subject to a single statutory 'sustainable development' test, replacing the existing tests of soundness
Question 7(a). Do you agree with our proposals to replace existing legal and policy tests for Local Plans with a consolidated test of 'sustainable
development', which would include consideration of environmental impact?
Response: No, local policy tests need to be local to match the different environments. These proposals would simplify the
often-protracted process which can, and does lead to an adopted Local Plan being outdated before it can be implemented resulting in the whole process having
to be reopened and thus delayed unnecessarily. It is not obvious that a consolidated test of sustainable development will be possible. There are
implications for compliance with both UK and international law. However, it would be helpful to simplify the evidence base.
Question 7(b). How could strategic, cross-boundary issues be best planned for in the absence of a formal Duty to Cooperate?
Response: A formal duty to cooperate needs to be implemented.
Proposal 4: A standard method for establishing housing requirement figures which ensures enough land is released in the areas where affordability is
worst, to stop land supply being a barrier to enough homes being built. The housing requirement would factor in land constraints and opportunities to more
effectively use land, including through densification where appropriate, to ensure that the land is identified in the most appropriate areas and housing
targets are met.
Question 8(a). Do you agree that a standard method for establishing housing requirements (that takes into account constraints) should be introduced?
Response: No. With such a variety of environments available, including land, the risk of building on floodplains, the consideration of local features, the
nature of community and local facilities to be taken into consideration, there is not any formula or no equivalence or algorithm that would produce a method
that, NORA feels, will be fair and reasonable. While planners may propose the development requirements, in reality, they remain the decision of the
Question 8(b). Do you agree that affordability and the extent of existing urban areas are appropriate indicators of the quantity of development to be
Response: No. There is, so far as NORA is aware, no evidence to relate affordability to the number of new-builds needed. The factors being used to assess
affordability are flawed, since using average income relates to one person and not the household, and secondly commuting disconnects income with site.
Proposal 5: Areas identified as Growth areas (suitable for substantial development) would automatically be granted outline planning permission for
the principle of development, while automatic approvals would also be available for pre-established development types in other areas suitable for building.
Question 9(a). Do you agree that there should be automatic outline permission for areas for substantial development (Growth areas) with faster routes for
Response: No. There is no justifiable reason to have one type of service for one area in a district and another for other parts. All should receive the
Question 9(b). Do you agree with our proposals above for the consent arrangements for Renewal and Protected areas?
Response: No. The definition of Renewal Areas is too vague to justify a different approach. Protected Areas should be resolutely protected without
exception, otherwise how can they be labelled ‘Protected’?
Question 9(c). Do you think there is a case for allowing new settlements to be brought forward under the Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects
Response: No. To be subject to outside control when the proposals are to affect the local community, it is undemocratic and a breach of the Localism Act, as
has been stated above in the Foreword, to exclude the involvement of the community.
Proposal 6: Decision-making should be faster and more certain, with firm deadlines, and make greater use of digital technology
Question 10. Do you agree with our proposals to make decision making faster and more certain?
Response: No, not at the expense of the community's interest. Developers can, and do, make last minute alterations in the hope of avoiding local scrutiny,
so decisions must allow for an appropriate delay when this occurs. The value of digital technology in the planning process has not been evaluated. The
application of digitalisation to beauty and local architecture has not been implemented and may not be possible.
Proposal 7: Local Plans should be visual and map-based, standardised, based on the latest digital technology, and supported by a new template.
Question 11. Do you agree with our proposals for accessible, web-based Local Plans?
Response: Yes, but not only should the Local Plans be easily accessible but also should include an easily read summary which is comprehensible and clear to
the general public, who are, not, in the main, professionals.
Proposal 8: Local authorities and the Planning Inspectorate will be required through legislation to meet a statutory timetable for key stages of the
process, and we will consider what sanctions there would be for those who fail to do so.
Question 12. Do you agree with our proposals for a 30-month statutory timescale for the production of Local Plans?
Response: No. Successive reductions in funding of planning departments has led to a dearth of experienced planners, and to expect the current staff to
re-write their Local Plans in the present climate with the present staff is unrealistic. Many Local Plans have been exhaustingly examined, modified but
finally approved after years of work, and an excess of a period of 30 months will be destructive. It is conceivable that Local Authority planners will
most likely leave the public sector to seek private employment elsewhere.
Proposal 9: Neighbourhood Plans should be retained as an important means of community input, and we will support communities to make better use of
Question 13(a). Do you agree that Neighbourhood Plans should be retained in the reformed planning system?
Response: Yes, but they must be given cogent power and not be side-lined. It is crucial that where the local community has produced a Local Plan that it is
accorded full recognition and implementation. Local Plans can take up to seven years from inception to adoption and if abolished in favour of simplified
housing plans and “design codes” which would be required to be in place within 30 months, and which meets the provisos set out, they would gain approval
Question 13(b). How can the neighbourhood planning process be developed to meet our objectives, such as in the use of digital tools and reflecting community
preferences about design?
Response: The objectives and purpose of a Neighbourhood Plan should indicate the wishes of the local community by public consultation. Certainly, the
preferences for compatible and acceptable designs of new developments that reflect the character, environment and historic architecture should be those
predominant in the area. In the matter of design, this should also embody a wider assessment of the environment, including the protection of open and
green spaces, and the existing infrastructure. NORA is cognisant that the term 'digital tools' includes websites or online resources that can make the
process easier to understand, accessible especially by the general public who reside and work in the area. A survey published by the Office for National
Statistics (ONS) in 2019 shows 5.3m Britons have either never gone online or not used the internet. It is important that all the population have access to
digital information and while computers are usually available at public libraries and Local Authorities' offices, to view planning applications, and provide
assistance. these are not sometimes easily accessible, especially to those who need to travel. Therefore, Local Authorities should provide hard copies of
documents, on request.
Proposal 10: A stronger emphasis on build out through planning
Question 14. Do you agree there should be a stronger emphasis on the build out of developments? And if so, what further measures would you support?
Response: Yes. The rate at which developers 'build out' is decided by their business plans and available finances. They will only build if they can sell
their dwellings. Penalties on planners for the 'slow building out' are illogical since they don't build the dwellings. Penalties on developers will
potentially impede the progress of the developments and may even result in the abandonment of the development. The rate of completing and selling property
is not a matter of planning but related to the economic situation of the time, the availability of mortgages or loans and the desirability of the
PILLAR 2: PLANNING FOR BEAUTIFUL AND SUSTAINABLE PLACES GOOD DESIGN
Question 15. What do you think about the design of new development that has happened recently in your area?
Response: In too many instances the same designs of new builds are used, especially by large developers, so that traditional or local design and features
are not considered, thus making new developments invariably uniform and unimaginative. Good design reflecting, but not necessarily, copying local
existing styles is unfortunately infrequent.
Question 16. Sustainability is at the heart of our proposals. What is your priority for sustainability in your area?
Response: Less reliance on cars: Improvements in public transport are long overdue. Regrettably, most public transport routes,
especially buses, are operated by private companies and profitability rather than service is the criterion for their continuance regardless.
Open spaces: The lack of provision of open spaces, especially in town and city centres has a predisposition to the 'canyonisation' and overbearing tall
buildings.Energy efficiency: should be paramount in new buildings, of whatever type. Trees: Seven or eight trees worth produce 740kg of oxygen per year.
They combat pollution and they contribute pleasant surroundings in an urban environment.Inappropriate developments are not transient but permanent.
This is detrimental and harmful to the character of the area.
Proposal 11: To make design expectations more visual and predictable, we will expect design guidance and codes to be prepared locally with community
involvement, and ensure that codes are more binding on decisions about development.
Question 17. Do you agree with our proposals for improving the production and use of design guides and codes?
Response: Yes, provided they are relevant to their locality and planners stipulate their implementation. Attempts to digitise beauty is unworkable and,
to quote, 'Beauty is in the eye of the beholder' and cannot be quantified. Guides may help but codes are dehumanising. The Government's Report in January
2020 entitled 'Living with Beauty' states 'Refuse Ugliness. Ugly buildings present a social cost that everyone is forced to bear. They destroy the sense of
place, undermine the spirit of community, and ensure that we are not at home in our world. Ugliness means buildings that are unadaptable, unhealthy and
unsightly and which violate the context in which they are placed. Preventing ugliness should be a primary purpose of the planning system.'
Question 18. Do you agree that we should establish a new body to support design coding and building better places, and that each authority should have a
chief officer for design and place-making?
Response: NORA would support local proposals but consider that centralising design is adverse, since it imposes a central view when local views should be
paramount. In taking into account proposed designs in planning applications for new builds, Planning Officers should be trained in design and be able to
take into their deliberation as to whether the proposed designs are attuned to and harmonious with the existing surroundings. Therefore, NORA is greatly
in favour that Local Planning Authorities should be required to appoint a locally led Chief Officer to administer and approve the design evaluations. It
is desirable, therefore, that there should be the establishment of a new body which would issue the appropriate guidance on the above.
Proposal 12: To support the transition to a planning system which is more visual and rooted in local preferences and character, we will set up a body
to support the delivery of provably locally-popular design codes, and propose that each authority should have a chief officer for design and place-making.
Proposal 13: To further embed national leadership on delivering better places, we will consider how Homes England’s strategic objectives can give
greater emphasis to delivering beautiful places.
Question 19. Do you agree with our proposal to consider how design might be given greater emphasis in the strategic objectives for Homes England?
Response: Yes. We have referred to the Homes England Strategic Plan 2018 to 2023 in which it is stated that this body 'will work with construction, design,
development, housing associations, Local Government and other partners'. It remains to be seen how this might be affected if Homes England can practically
'intervene in the right places at the right time to change the market'. It is vital that local views should be paramount, so residents should be included,
after all, they have to live with the proposals.
Proposal 14: We intend to introduce a fast-track for beauty through changes to national policy and legislation, to incentivise and accelerate high
quality development which reflects local character and preferences.
Question 20. Do you agree with our proposals for implementing a fast-track for beauty?
Response: Yes, provided the design complied with policy in Neighbourhood Plans, Local Design Statement and complied with appropriate
Proposal 15: We intend to amend the National Planning Policy Framework to ensure that it targets those areas where a reformed planning system can
most effectively play a role in mitigating and adapting to climate change and maximising environmental benefits.
Proposal 16: We intend to design a quicker, simpler framework for assessing environmental impacts and enhancement opportunities, that speeds up the
process while protecting and enhancing the most valuable and important habitats and species in England.
Proposal 17: Conserving and enhancing our historic buildings and areas in the 21st century
Proposal 18: To complement our planning reforms, we will facilitate ambitious improvements in the energy efficiency standards for buildings to help
deliver our world-leading commitment to net-zero by 2050.
Question 21. When new development happens in your area, what is your priority for what comes with it?
Response: The priorities depend on the needs and aspirations of local communities. More affordable housing, more or better infrastructure (such as
transport, schools, health provision), design of new buildings, more shops and/or employment space, green spaces: - These are all sought-after, but the
current need is for public sector rented dwellings. The Government's obsession with encouraging houses for sale ignores the over-riding demand and need for
social housing. Nearly four million households live in parent' or friend's dwellings when they should be independent. It is this lack of public sector
building of dwellings for rent that is the reason for the 'broken housing market'.
Proposal 19: The Community Infrastructure Levy should be reformed to be charged as a fixed proportion of the development value above a threshold,
with a mandatory nationally-set rate or rates and the current system of planning obligations abolished.
Questions 22(a). Should the Government replace the Community Infrastructure Levy and Section 106 planning obligations with a new consolidated
Infrastructure Levy, which is charged as a fixed proportion of development value above a set threshold?
Response: No. The current system ensures funding for local services and determined according to local needs. Changing it is
Question 22(b). Should the Infrastructure Levy rates be set nationally at a single rate, set nationally at an area-specific rate, or set locally?
Response: Locally. NORA considers that the Infrastructure Levy Rates are best assessed at local level relevant to need and demand
for ancillary services.
Question 22(c). Should the Infrastructure Levy aim to capture the same amount of value overall, or more value, to support greater investment in
infrastructure, affordable housing and local communities?
Response: No. Refer to Question 22(a)
Question 22(d). Should we allow local authorities to borrow against the Infrastructure Levy, to support infrastructure delivery in their area?
Response: Yes. Borrowing would allow Local Authorities to tailor their requirements as they see fit.
Proposal 20: The scope of the Infrastructure Levy could be extended to capture changes of use through permitted development rights
Question 23. Do you agree that the scope of the reformed Infrastructure Levy should capture changes of use through permitted development rights?
Response: Yes. Any development merits this contribution as long as it is for the benefit of the community.
Proposal 21: The reformed Infrastructure Levy should deliver affordable housing provision
Question 24(a). Do you agree that we should aim to secure at least the same amount of affordable housing under the Infrastructure Levy, and as much on-site
affordable provision, as at present?
Response: The failure to provide adequate public sector rented dwellings is at the heart of the housing problem. Attempting to solve it by discounting
dwellings for sale does not solve this serious problem. Using levies places the burden unfairly on the local community whereas the support for public
sector rented properties should come from general taxation.
Question 24(b). Should affordable housing be secured as in-kind payment towards the Infrastructure Levy, or as a 'right to purchase' at discounted rates
for local authorities?
Response: The latter – a 'right to purchase'
Question 24(c). If an in-kind delivery approach is taken, should we mitigate against local authority overpayment risk?
Response: No. This might be deemed to be an over-complication. Currently the on-site S106 affordable housing is specified and delivered for and agreed
transfer price to a local authority. This is for value (no over or under payment).
Question 24(d). If an in-kind delivery approach is taken, are there additional steps that would need to be taken to support affordable housing quality?
Response: Yes. The Infrastructure Levy affordable housing would need to be specified and delivered for the agreed transfer price as currently takes place
for S106 affordable housing. Notwithstanding, the failure to provide adequate public sector rented dwellings is at the heart of the housing problem.
Trying to solve it by discounting dwellings for sale does not solve this serious problem. Using levies places the burden unfairly on the local community
whereas the support for public sector rented properties should come from general taxation.
Proposal 22: More freedom could be given to local authorities over how they spend the Infrastructure Levy
Question 25. Should local authorities have fewer restrictions over how they spend the Infrastructure Levy?
Response: No. Any Levy should remain used for funding the support and supply to meet the demand and need related to the development and undermines the
reason for imposing the Levy on development, and if used otherwise it becomes just another form of taxation. The Infrastructure Levy should be ring
fenced for affordable housing and infrastructure to mitigate the harm externalities caused by the development.
Proposal 23: As we develop our final proposals for this new planning system, we will develop a comprehensive resources and skills strategy for the
planning sector to support the implementation of our reforms. In doing so, we propose this strategy will be developed including the following key elements:
Response: If the new planning system should be implemented, it should be principally funded by the beneficiaries of planning
gain - landowners and developers - rather than the national or local taxpayer.
Proposal 24: We will seek to strengthen enforcement powers and sanctions
Comment: With the financial restraints on Local Planning Authorities, investigation of breaches of planning regulations have become a low priority, because
staffing in Enforcement sections has been reduced to the absolute minimum. Enforcement is generally regarded as the Cinderella of the planning service, and
leaving the discretion entirely in the planning officers' remit makes it easy to avoid taking any action. Local Planning Authorities rely on the reporting of potential breaches by the general public, and the
failure to take action is a disincentive to report likely breaches. That elected representatives are excluded from the process is to be regretted.
NORA members have expressed concerns about abuse of the Appeals process. The Town and Country Planning Act 1990 S70 (Decline to Determine) was introduced
to prevent ongoing repeat applications and/or following prior Enforcement proceedings for the same property. This enables two appeals to be lodged, by
first appealing the Refusal and subsequently any Enforcement. It is proposed that only one appeal should be permitted, either against the Refusal or the
Enforcement Notice. Where Enforcement is considered actionable, Local Planning Authority should be given the power to withdraw the original permission
and the applicant must submit a new application for any changes. The existing right to Appeal an enforcement notice causes both the Applicant and the
Local Planning Authority additional costs which could then be avoided.
NORA would suggest that there should be a reduction of the period for lodging a planning appeal following a Refusal Notice for retrospective works, from
12 weeks to 4 weeks, thus aligning with the 28-day timescale for compliance with an Enforcement Notice. This would not be prejudicial to either party.
As an alternative, the Right to Appeal should be removed on the grounds that permission should be granted, when appealing an Enforcement Notice, where the
Refusal Notice has already been dismissed at Appeal.
A third option would be to remove the Right to Appeal at the Enforcement stage where a development is retrospective and an Appeal is already in progress
but not necessarily having been decided.
A majority of Appeals are lodged automatically and without merit. It is suggested that there should be a minimum fee to discourage frivolous or vexatious
S46 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 should be amended to reduce the current time of 12-16 weeks. This would have the effect of reducing the #
delays in notices and warnings to those who contravene the regulations.
Question 26. Do you have any views on the potential impact of the proposals raised in this consultation on people with protected characteristics as defined
in section 149 of the Equality Act 2010?
Response: It is understood that the Public Sector Equality Duty is a duty on Public Authorities to consider or think about how their policies or decisions
affect people who are protected under the Equality Act 2010. It is further understood that private organisations and individuals are not required to
comply with the duty. NORA is content that there is continuance of this duty as it stands.