Date published: 17th August 2016

The way members of the public book their chance to speak about specific planning applications at North Norfolk District Council's Development Committee meetings is about to change.

At the moment people must arrive at least 15 minutes before the start of the meeting and request to speak either for or against an application. This is to allow time for the Chairman to rearrange the order of items on the agenda to prevent people having to wait for a long time.

For 'minor' applications, one objector and one supporter is allowed to speak on each application for up to three minutes. If several people have attended to speak on a single application either in support or in objection, they must agree among themselves who will fill the speaking roles.

For ‘major’ applications, or those in which the Council has legal interest or is the landowner, up to four objectors will be allowed to speak for up to three minutes each. Up to four supporters will be allowed to speak for an equivalent time in total to that allowed for the objectors.

From September 22 those wishing to speak will need to register by 9am on the Tuesday before the Thursday meeting (or 48 hours in advance if the day of the meeting is switched from the usual Thursday).

This will allow the list of speakers to be assembled, the agenda ordered in advance and this information circulated to key officers prior to the meeting.

Cllr Sue Arnold, Cabinet Member for Planning and Planning Policy, said: "The change will assist with the smooth running of the committee.

"It will avoid potential confusion at the start of the meeting as customer service staff try to ensure the names of speakers are logged against the various items and the agenda re-ordered to reflect the public interest."

The new procedure comes into force from 1 September 2016 ready for Development Committee on 22 September 2016 and information about the new registration process will be online soon.

The number of people allowed to speak and the amount of time they will be allowed to speak for will remain the same.

The rules for local district councillors and town or parish council representatives speaking at the committee are unchanged.

There will also be less noticeable changes to Development Committee rules involving deferred items, committee site visits and the cut off time for the submission of information. Details can be found here.

Last updated: 26th September 2016