WDDC Refuses Bridport Petitions
7:36am 23rd December 2014
There's outrage in Bridport after West Dorset District Council decided not to look at petitions that had been signed by thousands of residents protesting against local development plans.
People have been expressing their concern about proposals to build 760 homes in Vearse farm and developments in the town's car parks.
But council said that since the planning inspector has already looked at the application of both local plans and is coming to a decision so these petitions would have no impact on the process.
Bridport Councillor Ros Kayes said "This is an absolute dereliction of the democratic process."
"What utter disrespect for members of the public that their efforts should be seen in this way. West Dorset District Council may have a new chief executive but it has clearly not changed the way it is working as a result."
"This decision is shameful and an absolute disgrace."
But West Dorset District Council told Wessex FM that the decision is justified and the public will get an opportunity to have their say.
Matt Prosser, Chief Executive of West Dorset District Council, said: "Hearings held by an independent Government Planning Inspector into the Local Plan for West Dorset, Weymouth and Portland recently finished."
"During this process, the Inspector received written evidence and heard the direct submissions of the objectors, including submissions presented by the Advearse group. "
"Therefore, the petition will not be discussed by the Full Council as the matter is one that has already been able to go through a separate investigation process through the public examination into the whole plan. "
"There will be a final opportunity for the public to comment on any proposed modifications to the plan before the Inspector issues his final report and the plan is formally adopted."