Island Development Plan needs to be amended – DPA member
A MEMBER of the Development & Planning Authority thinks that some policies in the Island Development Plan need amending and he will lay a requete in bid to get changes made if he has to.
Lester Queripel said many people in the community had been saying for years that the character of the island was being ruined by ‘unsympathetic to the surroundings’ types of development and he shared their concerns.
He had hoped that the annual monitoring report of the plan would recognise that and action be taken, but that had not happened.
‘Instead the action points in the report merely seek to continue to monitor policies that are actually failing the community in many respects,’ he said.
Monitoring the process of failing policies was, in his view, a futile exercise and the current process was too laboured and protracted.
‘I want to emphasise that I am not criticising any of my Development & Planning Authority colleagues – they simply have a different view to me and I respect they have every right to that view,’ said Deputy Queripel.
He said the affordable housing policy was not working for the benefits of first-time buyers and needed amending.
The policy for protected monuments and buildings also needed to change.
Deputy Queripel said he also had concerns about the ‘filling in gaps’ approach to development
in St Peter Port and the north of the island.
Permission had already been given for new housing developments on farmland and fields when brownfield sites that were far more suitable for development were available elsewhere.
‘The report needed to recognise all of that and more, but unfortunately it didn’t,’ he said.
He disagreed completely with the view of colleagues that there was no evidence that the IDP needed amending.
Coupled with the action points not being anywhere near as robust and proactive as they should have been, he could not endorse the report.
He said the recently made public comment by DPA president Deputy John Gollop that the island was not dairy or farming friendly sounded as though he too did not believe that the policies of the IDP were working.
Deputy Queripel said he was very much looking forward to discussing it with him.
He had no intention of resigning and would carry on trying to convince his DPA colleagues that policies needed to be changed.
If he could not do that, he would lay a requete in the next couple of months.
He would seriously consider supporting any other requete laid by States members that sought to do this in the meantime.
He was aware that some colleagues who represent parishes in the north were not happy with the current policy which said the majority of development will be in St Sampson’s and the Vale and he hoped that they might act on that.