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Three Rivers Council demands freedom from Government housing targets

October 21, 2021 1:40 PM

Cllr Stephen Giles-Medhurst and Cllr Matthew Bedford at a threatened fieldAt the Council meeting on Tuesday, Three Rivers Council backed a motion from the ruling Liberal Democrat group calling on the government to change national planning rules which force the council to build homes in the Green Belt.

Cllr Matthew Bedford, Three Rivers Cabinet Member for Planning Policy, said "Government housing targets are calculated using out-of-date forecasts from 2014, and enforced through the Planning Inspectorate which is an unelected quango. Elsewhere in Hertfordshire, the Planning Inspectorate has given permission for large new housing estates in the Green Belt, despite the harm caused. We want the government to change the rules and we have asked our local Conservative MPs to back us."

Cllr Sarah Nelmes, Leader of the Council, said "it is astonishing that the Conservatives failed to back our motion. They need to explain to residents why they do not support changing the rules to give us more flexibility to set our own target without interference. We have already had support from local LibDem MP Daisy Cooper and I hope our two Conservative MPs will now back our campaign."