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Council Must Increase Income and Charge for Planning Services

April 20, 2010 6:28 PM

Lib Dem Cllr Alison Kelly has asked the council to consider charging for a service known as "pre-application advice". Many other local authorities charge for this service.

Before a large planning application comes before the borough council - for example, the Tesco proposals for Upper High Street - there are often several meetings with planning officers. Advice is sought, offered and the whole affair can be time-consuming for council staff, right up to the point at which the application goes before a Planning Committee. Many other local authorities have a scale of charges for such a "service". It is not clear why the Borough of Epsom & Ewell does not charge, but the Lib Dem group feels increasing income is more important than making cuts, in years such as 2010 when budgeting is tight.

Cllr Kelly's Motion to the council meeting on 27th April is likely to be deferred for debate at a committee meeting in the summer cycle. Contact Cllr Kelly or Cllr Colin Taylor for further information. Do YOU think the council should charge developers for pre-application advice?