Plans Are Labour Pains

Chris Maile, Chair of the Campaign for Planning Sanity (CfPS) has thrown down the gauntlet to the Government over plans to effectively remove any right of the public to participate in devastating major planning decisions. Chris said, "We will fight these proposals at the ballot box, in the courts, on the streets and in the trees and tunnels". He added that, if the proposals are implemented, CfPS will ensure that every application approved without permission will be challenged by every conceivable means. This includes putting up candidates against Labour in elections, raising the funds to fight proposals in the courts, encouraging lawful protest, supporting direct action by local residents and through any other means needed to prevent the developments from being constructed. Environmental pressure group Friends of the Earth said the proposals were "bad for democracy and bad for the environment".

CfPS, a volunteer campaign group offering free advice and assistance to local communities opposed to adverse development proposals, has written to every MP and MEP in the country, and will be orchestrating a major campaign to ensure that any community likely to be adversely affected by these proposals knows the full implications. Large scale lobbying of constituency offices will ensure that MPs are under no illusion as to what their local electorate think of this erosion of their rights to have a say on development proposals that will affect their lives.

Chris Maile, himself a veteran of direct action and legal challenges against environmentally destructive development proposals such as Manchester Airport, the M65 and the M66, said, "We have the controversy over phone masts, with the Government refusing to allow the public to have a full say on where they are sited. Now we are threatened by these potentially more devastating proposals. In the shadows are something in the region of 134 waste incinerators waiting for permission, many of these will eventually go to public inquiry. Whenever incineration is proposed it gets massive opposition. With the new proposals the public would be denied the right to object, even though there is a real prospect that the health of local residents will be affected. CfPS say no way. The voice of the public is vital in a democracy, otherwise you have dictatorship. It is clear that is what Labour want for the UK".

Campaign for Planning Sanity (0161 959 0999, info@planningsanity.co.uk)


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