22/03/15
It’s about time that the Milton Keynes Members of Parliament started using their positions as Parliamentary Ministers on behalf of the community of Milton Keynes.

The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government has the power to take over (‘call in’) planning applications rather than letting the local authority decide. The secretary of state will normally only do this if the application conflicts with national policy in important ways, or is nationally significant.

He or she has to take published government policy into account when deciding whether or not to call in a planning application, and when making the decision. If the secretary of state decides to call in a planning application, an inspector is appointed to carry out an inquiry into the proposal. The secretary of state has to take the inspector’s findings into account when making the decision.
(Standard Note: SN/SC/0930 Last updated: 29 July 2014 Author: Louise Smith Section Science and Environment Section).

This should be ‘called in’ by our local MP’s Mark Lancaster and Iain Stewart to The Minister of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Greg Clark): The Government believe that planning decisions should be taken in, and by, local communities, and so use their call-in powers sparingly. Essentially, the powers are used when matters are of national significance.

Local Communities (such as Aylesbury Vale) cannot be allowed to abuse their local powers by pushing developments to their boundary edges, forcing infrastructure responsibility on a neighboring community, (i.e. Milton Keynes).

Iain Stewart is absolutely right to voice objection.  He has articulated the reasons to object very well.  However the Milton Keynes community wants and needs a stronger action with the Secretary of State, at Westminster from Iain Stewart and Mark Lancaster.