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Onchan chair says DEFA Minister shouldn't have final planning say

Thu, 25 Apr 2019


The chairman of Onchan Commissioners has questioned whether the Environment Minister should have the final say on planning appeals.
 
Martin Macfarlane doesn’t believe one elected official should have enough power to overrule objections which are supported by independent inspectors.
 
It comes after Onchan Commissioners appealed against plans by Howstrake Developments to build an 80-bed care home on King Edward Road.
 
Members challenged the application on its lack of conformity with the Onchan Local Plan, its impact on the view, and the effects on traffic and transport.
 
Onchan’s objection was supported by an independent planning inspector, but then dismissed by Environment Minister Geoffrey Boot.
 
He justified his stance by claiming an elected Tynwald member was best placed to make these decisions, not ‘an off-Island inspector’.
 
Mr Boot turned down the appeal for a number of reasons, including the need for care homes on the Island and to optimise the use of land in the town.
 
Local Democracy Reporter Ewan Gawne asked Mr Macfarlane to explain the board’s objection to the plans:
 

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