Garret welcomes move to deal with planning backlog
Sinn Féin councillor Matt Garrett has welcomed a move by the Belfast City Council to deal with the backlog of planning applications.
Counillor Garrett, who is Chair of the Planning Committee said:
“There had been a backlog of planning applications as powers were transferred from the Department of Environment to the council.
“With nearly 800 legacy planning applications being transferred to the council, now down to 450, the move will see the Chair and Vice Chair of the Planning Committee, in conjunction with the Town Solicitor and planning officers, able to approve applications.”
However, councillors will receive the list of outstanding applications and can request an application is brought to committee for approval.
“We want to provide as good a service as possible to everyone in Belfast and this decision is a means of tackling the backlog.
“We hope to ease the situation for all those who have been waiting for some time to undertake work but also to speed up the process for those who have made recent applications.
“Planning is an important element in shaping our city, boosting economic and social development or just improving the lives of individuals so it is essential that it is not dragged out unnecessarily.
“Councillors can still highlight applications where local concerns are a priority so I think this is good news for everyone involved.”