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Municipal Housing (Planning Procedure)

Volume 722: debated on Tuesday 21 December 1965

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asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government whether he proposes that the planning procedure concerning municipal housing should be speeded up; and if he will make a statement.

My right hon. Friend will certainly deal as quickly as he can with any applications or appeals that come to him. But the important thing is that the Housing authorities should look well forward in assessing their land needs; and the Department will be in touch with all those with big programmes ahead to make sure that this is being done.

Will my right hon. Friend make it quite clear that this question of procedure must be speeded up, because one of the great difficulties of local authorities has been the delay in Ministry decisions? Is he also aware that sometimes there are difficulties between the planning and housing committees? Could he look into this and indicate some way of speeding up the procedure at local level?

My right hon. Friend is never afraid of work, but I do not think that he can take it upon himself to sort out the difficulties of two committees of the same local authority. With regard to our end of the problem, it is true that there are delays, and we are constantly aware of them and doing our best to speed things up.