A county council has recruited a new planning staff member and promoted another following changes in practice in enforcement and monitoring.
Buckinghamshire County Council has promoted Olivia Stapleford to planning and enforcement monitoring officer to look at enquiries and reports of alleged breaches of planning control.
Meanwhile, Sabina Kupczyk has joined the local authority from Essex County Council to become planning and monitoring officer.
Planning advice and compliance business manager Jamie Staples told Planning: “We have streamlined practices and processes to reduce the need for legal support.
“We cut caseload from 36 to 14 cases: a dozen of those have had enforcement action taken against them and none has lasted more than two years whereas before they could dragged on and on.”
Streamlined measures included producing a letter template that ruled out the need to involve the legal team. The bill for legal work had gone from £97,000 last year to a mid-year figure of £5,227.
“We have adopted a pyramidal approach: to reduce costs, increase speed of enforcement and to raise the profile of our work.”
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