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Planning (Scotland) Bill: Stage 3 (Day 2)

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 19th June 2019.

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Photo of Kevin Stewart Kevin Stewart Scottish National Party

Amendment 130 removes a section that was inserted by an amendment lodged at stage 2 by Alex Cole-Hamilton. I spoke against it then, and I believe that others now agree that it goes too far.

I fully recognise the importance of the green belt. Our policy for it is set out in the Scottish planning policy and planning authorities have a key role in applying it locally. Naturally, we would expect that anyone who wants to develop in the green belt would set out how their proposals fit with national and local policies, and the planning authority would take that into account in making its decision.

However, there are many problems with Mr Cole-Hamilton’s approach. It is very restrictive, definitions are unclear, and it could effectively ban all development in the green belt.

The green belt is important, but it is not a blanket restriction on development.