To receive a report from the Director of Place informing members of the outcomes of the public consultation on the Meeting Housing Needs Supplementary Planning Document, the amendments that have been made in response to comments received and to formally adopt the Meeting Housing Needs Supplementary Planning Document (SPD).
The Cabinet had before it a report * from the Director of Place informing it of the outcomes of the public consultation on the Meeting Housing Needs Supplementary Planning Document, the amendments that had been made in response to comments received and to formally adopt the Meeting Housing Needs Supplementary Planning Document (SPD).
The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Regeneration outlined the contents of the report and made reference to the following:
· The existing Meeting Housing Needs SPD was adopted in June 2012 and was now out of date. The SPD had therefore been updated to reflect the policies of the current adopted Local Plan ensuring that the guidance was consistent with the latest national planning policy and practice guidance. Additionally, the update sought to reflect on, and positively respond to, the Council’s Corporate Plan and Housing Strategy.
· The scope and content of the new Meeting Housing Needs SPD was broader than the current version. It set out a series of positive measures to support housing diversification in Mid Devon including through community led housing, custom and self-build and modern methods of construction. The SPD also provided comprehensive guidance on affordable housing matters including tenure mix, dwelling size and design considerations, housing for older people and those with disabilities as well as planning to meet the needs of gypsies, travellers and travelling show people.
· A six week public consultation on the draft SPD took place between 17th July and 25 August 2023 where a total of 11 responses were received. Officers had provided a summary of the main comments received along with a response and where appropriate an explanation of how these comments had been addressed in the final version presented for adoption.
· Once adopted, the Meeting Housing Needs SPD would be capable of being a material consideration in the determination of planning applications.
Discussion took place with regard to:
· Why the consultation had taken place when it had? It was confirmed that there had been no specific reason, it had just been the earliest opportunity mindful of the timescales of the new Local Plan.
· The allocation to key workers and how they were defined.
· Community Land Trusts, how many existed and was the fact that funding was available widely advertised? It was confirmed that all Town and parish Council’s had been written to with an offer of officer support for those interested in submitting an application. Again, this could be an issue to be followed up through the State of the District Debate. It was confirmed that Government funding had been secured from the LGA.
· The benefits of self builds in terms of meeting Net Zero targets, however, self builds were costly due to material costs having gone up.
RESOLVED that The Mid Devon Housing Needs Supplementary Planning Document (Appendix 1 of this report) be adopted and is published on the Council’s website together with the Strategic Environmental Assessment Screening Report (Appendix 2), the Habitats Regulations Assessment Screening Report (Appendix 3), the Statement of Consultation (Appendix 4), and its Adoption Statement (Appendix 5).
(Proposed by Cllr S Keable and seconded by Cllr S Clist)
Reason for the decision
The Meeting Housing Needs SPD provides guidance on the Mid Devon Local Plan 2013 – 2033 policies on housing. The document will reduce the risk of costs being awarded against the Council where decisions are based on its content.
Note: * Report previously circulated.