Special measures designation announcement timescale slips

The government has yet to make its much-anticipated announcement on which councils will be put in 'special measures', allowing developers to bypass their planning departments, despite having pledged to do so by the end of last month.

In June, the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) stated in its response to the consultation on the move that it would announce which local planning authorities would be placed in 'special measures' in October.

Local authorities are at risk of this where they have determined fewer than 30 per cent of applications between July 2011 and June 2013 within 13 weeks.

In such cases, developers would have the option of submitting their applications straight to the Planning Inspectorate.

Michael Bingham, deputy head of division at DCLG emailed council chief executives on 1 November saying that it was hoping to make announcements "early next week".

The email said: "Where data amendments have been supplied and checked we shall be publishing an updated table to show the corrected figures for each authority."

Several county councils raised queries over the DCLG’s data after the draft list was published in September.

The DCLG was approached for a statement but had not provided one at the time of this article's publication.

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