Key objection to pumping station was missed at planning meeting
A SENIOR planning officer has come under fire after a key objection to a proposed new pumping station in Kingswood was "forgotten".
Lord Mayor Councillor Danny Brown submitted a written objection to Hull City Council before the planning committee met last week.
Councillor John Fareham, who sits on the committee, said the application was a "major planning item" and that the views of Cllr Brown would have been considered.
"I am still appalled that his views were not put to us and I do know I would have listened with an open mind," he said.
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"As a former chairman I am shocked an officer can just 'forget'.
"What is vexatious about this matter is both Councillor Dave McCobb and I explored at the meeting whether Cllr Brown had objected.
"I also checked the file there and then.
"Both of us, and therefore the committee, were told no such objections were there.
"It does call into question how matters are handled, yet Labour seem to want to impose cuts on the service."
Cllr Brown, ward councillor for Kings Park, received confirmation the objection had been received and expected his concerns to be aired during the hearing.
"I have been working closely with the residents who objected to the application and I submitted a written objection of my own," he said.
"I got a receipt saying it had been received so I thought that was going to be included in the meeting.
"When I questioned why it had not been included I was told it had been forgotten."
Cllr Brown was out of the country when the meeting took place and the application was approved by ten votes to three.
Like any planning application, all objections that are sent to the council should form part of the decision- making process.
Although Cllr Fareham acknowledged the objection would have been considered, he was sceptical as to whether it would have made a significant difference on the outcome of the decision.
The Tory group leader said: "With the greatest respect to Cllr Brown, who is a personal friend, he would have been hard pressed to have found planning reasons for refusal stronger than reasons to accept.
"I can't speak for others but it would be amazing if Cllr Brown, with no deep track-record on planning, found something experienced members had not.
"Members do place weight on local member views although we will still vote against if they don't give us strong planning reasons.
"At all times, adherence to planning policies is expected, not loyalty to our peers."
Residents in Selset Way where the facility is due to be built, have been campaigning against the proposals since they were first outlined and informed Cllr Brown of the absence of his objection.
A council statement said: "Because of an administrative error Cllr Brown's letter was not referenced at the meeting.
"However, the issues that he raised and all the salient points from all those who objected were considered and addressed in the report and at the meeting."