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Planning Permission

Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government written question – answered on 13th January 2020.

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Photo of Tracey Crouch Tracey Crouch Conservative, Chatham and Aylesford

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what guidance he issues to local planning authorities on the consideration of controversial planning applications during purdah.

Photo of Robert Jenrick Robert Jenrick The Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government

To date, Government has issued no guidance to local planning authorities about consideration of planning applications during the pre-election period.

Within my Department, caution is exercised during both general and local election periods, with no substantive decisions issued. During these periods, where I receive a request to intervene in a case, or a case is referred to me by an authority, I am able to delay a grant of planning permission while I consider whether or not to call-in an application, by means of a holding direction issued under section 31 of the Town and Country Planning (Development Management Procedure) (England) Order 2015.

Local authorities should exercise good judgement about whether it is appropriate to determine cases of local or national significance or controversy during a pre-election period of sensitivity. I intend to work with the Local Government Association to ensure they provide suitable guidance to councils to this effect.

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