Draft Statement of Community Involvement 2018
12.1 East Hampshire District Council is the Planning Authority for those parts of the district outside of the South Downs National Park Authority. As Planning Authority, the Council considers and determines planning applications made under planning legislation with proposals ranging from minor household developments such as extensions, through to major applications for residential development, retail, office schemes, industrial schemes and infrastructure schemes (e.g. new roads).
12.2 The Council does not determine planning applications relating to mineral processing and waste disposal. Such proposals are determined by Hampshire County Council. Further information can be found here: http://www3.hants.gov.uk/mineralsandwaste.htm
12.3 The Council wishes to ensure that any person, group and service providers affected by or interested in a planning application has an opportunity to comment on planning applications.
12.4 The Council considers it very important that the local community is involved in the development management process as early as possible. The Council therefore encourages applicants of major, significant or sensitive sites to engage with the local community before a planning application is submitted to ensure that issues are identified and that applicants have the opportunity to make appropriate amendments to their scheme.
12.5 The Council encourages potential applicants to engage with the local community on major development at the pre-application stage. However, pre-application community engagement is only mandatory where the planning application / proposal is for wind turbine development involving more than 2 turbines or where the hub height of any turbine exceeds 15 meters.
12.6 The Council would expect applicants to undertake high quality consultation that is transparent for the community, is not misleading and makes it clear that no decision has been made by the Council. The Local Planning Authority wishes to encourage pre-application engagement with communities and developers where it will add value to the process and the outcome.
12.7 Wherever possible, the Council will discuss the need for community involvement with applicants and agents at the pre-application stage. Further information on the Council's pre-application advice service can be found at the following link: https://www.easthants.gov.uk/planning-permission/pre-application-planning-advice
12.8 Where appropriate the Council will utilise the services of the Design Review Panel (also known as the Architects panel) which is a process whereby significant development proposals may be referred to either the South East Regional Design Panel or the East Hampshire Design Review Panel. These panels consist of independently appointed architects, designers and development professionals who provide unbiased design advice to the Council. There is the opportunity for the designer to present their scheme to the Panel.
12.9 Where appropriate, the Council will establish a Development Consultation Forum as amechanism to allow a developer of significant proposals to explain their proposals to councillors, public and key stakeholders at an early stage. The Forum will seek to:
• Identify any issues that may be considered in a formal application;
• Inform pre-application discussions between officers and the developer; and
• Enable the developer to shape an application to address community issues.
12.10 Applicants should undertake early consultation with the community and the Council will, wherever possible encourage applicants to do so. Applicants may also wish to discuss proposals with the local Councillor(s) or Town / Parish Council.
12.11 All planning applications are subject to statutory consultation requirements and these are set out in Appendix B together with the additional actions the Council undertakes over and above the statutory minimum. East Hampshire District Council will continue to engage its community based on these requirements.
12.12 Where a press advertisement is required this is published in The Hampshire Independent.
12.13 Site Notices - Statutory site notices and major application site notices will be placed on or close to the planning application site advertising the details of the proposed development.
12.14 Neighbour notification letters are sent to the occupiers of any "adjoining property" and give 28 days from the date of the letter to make comment. The definition of this is set out at the end of Appendix B. Where that property lies outside the East Hampshire District Council planning area (i.e. within the South Downs National Park or within an adjoining administrative area) the Council will notify the occupier of that property. For major or significant schemes the Council may, at its discretion, notify the occupiers of more properties than the minimum.
12.15 Where significant amendments are made to an application the Council may undertake additional publicity in the form of a subsequent round of neighbour notification. This will be for a period of 14 days and will only be undertaken where the amendments may have a material impact off the site.
12.16 When submitting a planning application, it would be helpful to include within the Planning Statement (or provide a separate statement on community involvement) how the community has been consulted, a summary of what comments have been received and how the scheme has been amended to address matters of concern.
12.17 Planning applications can be viewed on the Council's website and at the Council Offices at Penns Place, Petersfield during working hours. The online planning application search register can be viewed here: https://planningpublicaccess.easthants.gov.uk/online-applications//.
12.18 Anyone can make comment on planning applications and comments can be made online via the planning application search register.
12.19 Comments can also be submitted via email / post. Representations received cannot be treated in confidence and will form part of the public planning application file which (subject to the Data Protection Act) is available on line, or, for inspection by appointment for 'live' files, at the Council Offices.
12.20 All representations will be taken into account in the decision making process and will be summarised. Representations should be sent in to the Council before the end of the consultation period, which will be the last of the neighbour notification, site notice or press advertisement periods. Where an application is considered at Planning Committee any late representation will also be brought to the attention of the committee.
12.21 The Council has a scheme to allow the public to speak at its Planning Committee but there are some rules that must be followed. You can speak only on a planning application where you have submitted comments in writing within the publicised date for comments and where that application is to be determined by the Planning Committee. If you are an applicant or an objector we will tell you in advance when you have a right to speak to the committee and you must let us know 48 hours before the meeting if you do wish to speak.