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Housing and Planning Bill - Report (5th Day) (Continued)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 8:45 pm on 25th April 2016.

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Photo of Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Lord in Waiting (HM Household) (Whip) 8:45 pm, 25th April 2016

Our aim with these pilots is certainly to be able to measure and look at differing effectiveness. As the noble Lord rightly said, the consultation is still out, and we will obviously be coming back with further details, but our intention is certainly to test the effectiveness of the different approaches. Furthermore, recent devolution deals included a commitment to this effect, and discussions are starting with these areas.

I will respond to the points raised by my noble friend Lord True in the next group, but I can say now that we will use regulations to prevent conflicts of interest and maintain ethical and professional standards. Local planning authorities will retain responsibility for deciding the planning application, having received a report with a recommendation from the provider that the planning applicant chose to submit their application to for processing. As I say, I will speak a bit further about this in the next group.

I hope that noble Lords recognise in my opening comments and the government amendments that we have sought to be reasonable, to address key concerns and to implement, in an effective way, the recommendations of the DPRRC. I hope on this basis that noble Lords will not press their amendments.

Amendment 120A agreed.