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Planning and Infrastructure Policy Advisory Committee







Committee Members:


Councillors Mrs Annabelle Blackmore (Chairman), Mrs Grigg, Clark, Munford, Spooner, Springett, Trzebinski, Young and English



Lead Members:


Councillor Cooper (Lead Member for Planning and Infrastructure)


Visiting Members:


Councillor J Sams



37.        Apologies for Absence


Apologies were received from Councillor Kimmance.




38.        Notification of Substitute Members


Councillor English was present as a Substitute Member for Councillor Kimmance.




39.        Urgent Items


Whilst not an urgent item, an update had been provided for Item 13 – Draft Statements of Common Ground. The update contained further information on the process for approving future statements, and amended the recommendation to reflect that the Lead Member for Planning and Infrastructure would take these decisions. 




40.        Notification of Visiting Members


Councillor J Sams was a Visiting Member for Item 13 - Draft Statements of Common Ground.




41.        Disclosures by Members and Officers


There were no disclosures of lobbying.




42.        Disclosures of Lobbying


There were no disclosures of lobbying.




43.        EXEMPT ITEMS


RESOLVED: That all items be taken in public unless any Member of the Committee wishes to refer to Item 14 – Exempt Appendix 1 and 2 to Item 13 – Draft Statements of Common Ground, in which case the Committee would enter into closed session due to the possible disclosure of exempt information.




44.        Minutes of the Meeting Held on 6 July 2022


RESOLVED: That the Minutes of the meeting held on 6 July 2022 be agreed as a correct record and signed.




45.        Presentation of Petitions


There were no petitions.




46.        Question and Answer session from Local Residents


There were no questions from Local Residents.




47.        Questions from Members to the Chairman


Councillor English asked the following question of the Chairman:


‘The SPI Committee last year referred on the question of reviewing Town Centre Car Park charging policies, but as far as I can see that matter has not appeared on any work programme. Can I ask the PAC Chairman to clarify when or if this is likely to appear on the PAC’s Agenda?’


The Chairman responded to the question.


The full response was recorded on the webcast and made available to view on the Maidstone Borough Council website.


To access the webcast recording, please use the link below:




48.        Forward Plan relating to the Committee's Terms of Reference


In response to questions, the Lead Member for Planning and Infrastructure confirmed that the Conservation Area Appraisal and Management Plan Update on the work programme for the expired Strategic Planning and Infrastructure Service Committee was still in progress. There had been delays due to vacancies within the relevant team, however following recruitment this workstream would continue.


RESOLVED: That the Forward Plan relating to the Committee’s Terms of Reference be noted.




49.        Draft Statements of Common Ground


The Lead Member for Planning and Infrastructure introduced the item and asked the Committee to consider the two Statements of Common Ground (SoCG) within the Exempt Appendices to the report. Attention was drawn to the urgent update which removed the recommendation for delegated authority to be given to the Interim Director (Local Plan Review) to agree new and updated SoCG during the Local Plan Review Independent Examination.


The Lead Member intended to take decisions regarding both new and updated SoCG, outlining the constitutional requirement for Member decisions to be first considered by a Policy Advisory Committee (PAC), and then the decision made at a public meeting. Neither of these were requirements for Officer decisions, so the Member decision-making process was viewed to be more open. During the Local Plan Review (LPR) Independent Examination, decisions may be required urgently, in which case the Lead Member would advise the Chairman and Vice-Chair of the Committee of the decision prior to it being taken.


In response to disagreement regarding details stated in the SoCG, the Lead Member expressed confidence that the documents were factual. It was advised that specific concerns could be addressed outside of the Committee meeting to allow the meeting to remain in public session.




1.   The draft Statements of Common Ground, attached at Exempt Appendices 1 and 2 to the report, be recommended to the Lead Member for Planning and Infrastructure for approval; and


2.   The process for agreeing amended and new Statements of Common Ground be noted.




50.        Exempt Appendix 1 and 2 to Item 13: Draft Statements of Common Ground


RESOLVED: That the item be considered alongside Item 13 – Draft Statements of Common Ground.




51.        Duration of Meeting


6.30pm to 7.04pm.