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Local Plan: letter

Plan fails with no funding for roads

The local development plan is flawed.

I have sent all members of Canterbury City Council (CCC), and their highly-paid consultants Amec, who produced coloured charts on the selected areas, “evidence-based” reasons of why they are fundamentally flawed.

In addition CCC has also ignored government guidelines on consultation. These government guidelines declare that the community, and stakeholders, must be involved at all stages of the process that ultimately will decide which sites go forward into any draft proposals for public consultation, as happened on May 30th 2013.

Members endorsed officers’ recommendations for “their” choice of sites. You, the public, have been totally ignored.

Members suggest that you will now be consulted (the ten-week consultation period) but, and it is a big but, you the “public”, will only be consulted about the proposed sites endorsed by the executive committee, not the many other sites that are “better” alternatives than the sites endorsed by officers, and later council members.

The secrecy behind all this is breathtakingly unbelievable.

Major – and I mean major – road construction and bypasses are necessary. Canterbury City Council has no responsibility for roads; Kent County Council (KCC) does. KCC has no money for major road construction – it cannot even fill the many potholes in the county. This Government has no money for major road construction; it is also broke.

Developers will not want to spend money on major road construction out of their profits. Of course if CCC officers or council members have guarantees or promissory notes, then let us the public see them.

In the meantime, there is no cash for the major roads changes that this draft plan to work requires.

Council members keep saying they are listening. Hear this: the whole plan put forward by you is bound to fail, on the sites, the pre-consultation, and funding of major roads and infrastructure.

The only council member to acknowledge our concerns and who has the professionalism to reply to me is Councillor  David Hirst. Well done to him, the other councillors and officers remain deafeningly silent.

Ken Little, Whitstable

HB Times 13th Jun 2013

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