Councils Need To Be Able To Defend Themselves

I WOULD like to point out that the council s overspend is approximately equal to the amount of money they had to spend, excluding officer and councillor time, on legal fees defending the Mereham public inquiry. Fees which the government failed to order th

I WOULD like to point out that the council's overspend is approximately equal to the amount of money they had to spend, excluding officer and councillor time, on legal fees defending the Mereham public inquiry. Fees which the government failed to order the vexatious developer to pay. It is about time the law was strengthened in this area of planning to stop the waste of public money defending communities from proposals to wreck their lives. Developers should be made to put up a bond prior to the commencement of disputed public inquiries and it should be the case that the onus is on the developer to prove that their case is not vexatious and not the other way round as it is now and that if they fail to do so, the bond should be used to pay the councils' legal fees.

Mereham is not the only unwanted development in Cambridgeshire, the Tesco plan for Hanley Grange is another and our councils need to be able to defend us without damaging the services they can afford to provide to the young, the old and the disabled.

ALAN JAMES

Haddenham


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