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President's Piece April 2016

Date: 19/4/2016

Stewart Murray's latest blog:

"So planners across the breadth of this green and pleasant land, we enter that strange time of the local government and political cycle with elections on the horizon in early May (and June!) with inevitable changes that brings to our political direction locally. But also, we are right in the middle of that old British protocol period called "purdah" where no promotional planning activity is goes public until elections are well and truly over and we know who are leaders and new members are. So this president's blog may appear a little "dry" until May's election outcomes. I'll pass on the June elections, if I may!

The key highlights, Housing & Planning Bill reforms march forward into their next stages, with consultations on Technical Details (PiP, Brownfield Land Register, S.106 Mediation, Alternative Providers), Local Plan Expert Panel Review and Starter Homes regulation details all out for quick robust POS engagement and responses. POS was helpfully recognised explicitly in the Local Plan (LPEG) Review and we engaged with the LPEG leads right up to the publication and subsequent consultations, where many of POS recommendations have been taken on board.

Much of these planning reform issues will be debated at the POS Forum and by the POS Board this Friday 22nd April where attending members to London will have an excellent opportunity to get the latest updates and directions on these complex issues facing planning. Also, I will be updating POS members on the Annual Spring Conference 16th and 17th June at my host office, London Mayor's City Hall in Central London. Watch this space for the flyer and exciting programme of our 2-day event packed with prestigious speakers and grand tours of the Capital's most transformative and exciting developing areas of development. I will also be handing over the reins to my successor for another exciting year ahead.

So, planners, let's gear up for big change and reform and prepare for many new directions whilst staying resilient and professional at every turn. Hope to see you at one of these forthcoming events or in our POS Groups and communications soon."

Stewart Murray, President 2015/16


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