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Portlanders to have say on future of isle
4:32pm Monday 2nd December 2013 in News
PORTLAND residents could have a bigger say over decisions affecting the isle after councillors backed a proposal for a neighbourhood plan.
The community will get the opportunity to feed into the plan that will could shape future development on Portland.
Weymouth and Portland Borough Council has backed the designation of the entire parish area of Portland as the neighbourhood plan area and it will be led by Portland Town Council with assistance from the borough.
The next stage will involve consultation of residents to approve a draft plan, which if approved will give residents more say in the future use of land and buildings in the area.
The draft plan will need to be approved by the borough council before residents get a second chance to have their say.
It will then be submitted to an inspector for independent examination and it also receives that approval a local referendum will be held.
The neighbourhood plan will be formally adopted as planning policy if it has the support of at least 51 per cent of residents who vote in the referendum.
Weymouth and Portland Borough Council’s spokesman for environment and sustainability Ian Roebuck urged residents to grasp the opportunity to have their say on the plans.
He said: “A neighbourhood plan allows residents to have more influence over planning decisions in their area.
“I encourage residents to get involved and have their say on the draft plan once it has been formulated.”
Portland Town Council has set up a working group to help develop the neighbourhood plan, with the whole process likely to take around 18 months to two years.
Town councillor Rachel Barton, pictured left, invited anyone interested in working with the group to get involved and said it was important Portlanders take the opportunity to feed into the consultation.
She said: “It is important because people on the island will have a say on what developments go ahead and where they will be.”
Anyone interested in getting involved in the development of the neighbourhood plan can contact clerk to Portland Town Council Ian Looker on 01305 821638. More details at|dorsetforyou.com/406403
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