Communities in Control?
The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) have released a new white paper on empowering communities - Communities in Control (Wednesday 9 July 2008).
The ideas outlined in the paper are in stark contrast to Government's proposals for the new Planning Bill.
The paper aims to bring power to local people while the Planning Bill is a significant step backwards. The Planning Bill would:
- Remove accountability
- Centralise decision making
- Reduce the chance to have your say
Hazel Blears claims this white paper will improve democracy but the Government is undermining the very concept by handing decisions on major projects to an unelected quango, the Infrastructure Planning Commission.
Empowerment is vital for thriving communities - but it must include people's right to participate in major decisions about their local area.