Local MP Andrew Jones has welcomed the announcement that the government is looking again at proposed changes to planning laws. The news came following the appointment of the new Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, Rt Hon Michael Gove.
The former proposals were designed to simplify the planning system making it easier to protect land from development and to streamline the process in areas where development was permitted. The plans though did not inspire support from the public, councillors or MPs.
Commenting, Andrew Jones said: “The planning system needs reforming; that much is very clear. I am contacted frequently by constituents who want their children and grandchildren to be able to get on the property ladder or live nearby but they are priced out of the market. We need people who work here in lower paid sectors to be able to afford to live here too so that they don’t have to commute with all the pollution those car journeys bring.
“We need to respect the development limits of our towns and villages. The materials used in developments which are granted need to be subject to greater control to complement better the surrounding development particularly in places like Harrogate, Knaresborough and Boroughbridge which have a distinctive and admired built heritage.
“Most of all we need to enshrine in law energy efficiency in new homes and other buildings. The technology exists, and has for some time, to reduce significantly our domestic reliance on fossil fuels for heating. I want to see this technology installed in new homes as a matter of planning policy to help us protect our environment by hitting our carbon reduction obligations.
“That is why I support looking again at changes to the planning system and I have shared my views with ministers.”