Saturday, April 12, 2014
Parish leaders are looking for help from residents in compiling a design document for Beer – despite one councillor calling it a ‘total bureaucratic waste’ of up to £10,000.
East Devon District Council (EDDC) has recommended the formulation of a Neighbourhood Plan to give the village some legal protection and limit overdevelopment.
Councillor Mike Green said: “It’s a total bureaucratic waste of money. It’s an expensive way of concluding what we already decided.”
Previous, similar studies such as the village design statement have indicated where residents want future developments, but have no more than an advisory role.
EDDC representative Geoff Pook said the neighbourhood plan differs in that there is consultation throughout the village and a referendum on it gives it strength in law.
He said the decision is national policy rather than the district council’s, but the process does not need to be as complicated as other parishes have made it – especially as Beer residents have already made their views clear.
He said he would be ‘surprised’ if the study costs as much as £10,000, and said there is funding available.
Beer Parish Council is looking for input from the wider village on how to lead the project.
Neighbourhood plans are part of the Localism Act and ask residents where and what sort of developments they want in the future.
Planning authorities are obliged to consider it when coming to a decision.
Anyone interested can contact parish clerk Annie Dallaway by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 01297 680244.