Agenda and minutes

Economic Development, Environment and Infrastructure Scrutiny Panel - Wednesday 15th February, 2023 10.30 am

Venue: Spencer Room

Contact: Susan Lightwing 

No. Item


Welcome and Evacuation Procedure


The Chair read out the Building Evacuation Procedure and welcomed all present to the meeting.


Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of interest.


There were no declarations of interest received at this point in the meeting.


Minutes - Economic Development, Environment and Infrastructure Scrutiny Panel - 18 January 2023 pdf icon PDF 147 KB


The minutes of the meeting of the Economic Development, Environment and Infrastructure Scrutiny Panel held on 18 January 2023 were taken as read and approved.


Enforcement of Planning Conditions

The Head of Planning will be in attendance to give an overview of Enforcement of Planning Conditions.


RECOMMENDATION:  that the Panel determine whether further information is required.


The Head of Planning and the Development Control Manager were in attendance to provide information in relation to Enforcement of Planning Conditions.


National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) paragraph 55 stated that local planning authorities should consider whether otherwise unacceptable development could be made acceptable through the use of conditions.  Middlesbrough Council, as the local planning authority, tried to issue decisions with as few conditions as possible.    There were usually a minimum of two conditions which were: a standard time limit for commencing  a development; and that it should be built in accordance with the plans.


NPPF paragraph 56 also specified six tests to ensure that planning conditions should be kept to a minimum and only imposed where they were:


1.         necessary;

2.         relevant to planning;

3.         relevant to the development to be permitted;

4.         enforceable;

5.         precise; and

6.         reasonable in all other respects.


Achieving this was not easy and one of the reasons why efforts were made to minimise the number of conditions.


Types of planning condition included:


           Standard time limit condition for commencement of development.

           Details and drawings subject to which the planning permission was granted.

           Pre-commencement conditions.

           Pre-occupancy or other stage conditions.

           Conditions relating to post occupancy monitoring and management.


Pre-commencement conditions could include details of the materials to be used, landscaping and operation.  The local planning authority would try to negotiate these with the Developer so that the plans submitted were approved as soon as possible.    Post occupancy could include a noise condition or the replacement of any landscaping if plants died off within so many years.


Conditions could not be used to:


           Unreasonably impact on the deliverability of a development.

           Reserve outline application details.

           Require development to be carried out in its entirety.

           Require compliance with other regulatory requirements.

           Require land to be given up.

           Require payment of money or other considerations.


With regard to enforcement, it was emphasised that this was discretionary.  The local planning authority could decide whether to take action or not.


A breach of planning control was defined in section 171A of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 as:


           The carrying out of development without the required planning permission; or

           Failing to comply with any condition or limitation subject to which planning             permission has been granted.


The Council had to decide whether it was in the public interest and proportionate to take action, particularly if there was a breach of something that planning permission would have been granted for anyway.   For example, issuing a Section 125 notice for untidy land – the Council could not ask for the reparation to be of a higher standard than the other properties in the surrounding area – it had to be equivalent to the rest of the area.


However, effective enforcement was important to:


           Tackle breaches of planning control which would otherwise have an           unacceptable impact on the amenity of the area.

           Maintain the integrity of the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 22/61


Date of Next Meeting - 22 March 2023


The date of the next meeting was confirmed as 22 March 2023.  The venue for the meeting had been changed to the Mandela Room.  A guest speaker from Leeds City Council would be attending virtually to provide information in relation to the Panel’s current scrutiny topic of Business Rates Pooling.


Crustacean Deaths Working Group

Verbal Update


Councillor Branson provided a verbal update on the Crustacean Deaths Working Group.  The last meeting had taken place on 3 February 2023 and the latest independent report on the cause of the mass morbidity had been discussed.


Further research was being undertaken as there were several theories as to the cause.  The Government’s initial findings were that the deaths were caused by algal bloom but a more recent report suggested that it could be a pathogen.  A study undertaken by a Marine Biologist at Newcastle University stated that the cause was pyridine, which was potentially linked to dredging taking place in the River Tees. 


Two representatives from the local fishing community had attended the Working Group and explained that the situation was causing them real financial hardship and several employees had had to be laid off.   Currently the Government was not providing any financial compensation to the fishing community.


The next meeting of the Working Group was scheduled for 3 March 2023.


The Chair thanked Councillor Branson for the update.


AGREED that the information was received and noted.


Any other urgent items which in the opinion of the Chair, may be considered