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What a coincidence on planning!

June 13, 2021 9:34 AM
Originally published by Babergh South Suffolk Liberal Democrats

keyThe government has announced plans to launch sweeping changes to the planning system that will remove the right of communities to object to inappropriate individual developments in their area.

Last month's Queen's speech included plans to overhaul England's planning system with the idea to remove the need for detailed planning applications for buildings in designated growth zones. The government white paper proposed splitting land into three categories: for growth, renewal or protection. Growth areas would be "suitable for substantial development" and proposals would automatically be granted outline planning permission with details agreed by officials, cutting out public objections.

Just by coincidence the latest data on political donations show that 13% of the Tories' recent donations came from property tycoons and companies. According to the Electoral Commission these firms gave £891,984 to Tory central office and eight local associations - a sizeable chunk of the £6,418,295 the party reported receiving in the first three months of 2021.

It has been revealed that 36 donations from developers were made to the Conservatives in the first three months of this year.

Most sums were paid to Conservative central office, with the largest single donation made by Bloor Holdings Ltd, which gave £150,000 and has reportedly had an application to build 1,000 new homes at Sandleford Park in Berkshire "recovered" by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, meaning it will be ruled on in Whitehall.

Local associations that received money directly include Witney - the constituency of the junior transport minister Robert Courts - as well as Tatton, Suffolk West and Enfield Southgate. There is no suggestion of any wrongdoing by the donors or the party.

As my mum would say, " you get what you pay for"!