In the last year there have been many changes at Maidstone Borough Council. For some time the Liberal Democrats have felt that the decision-making processes were not working well.
With the support of Councillors from other parties they have introduced a new system where matters are discussed and decisions are made by all-party committees rather than by a cabinet of a few Councillors drawn from a single party.
Maidstone residents are rightly concerned about the lack of planning and control on housing that is planned or already going up in many parts of the Borough. Without a Local Plan in place the Council, our Local Planning Authority, has not been able to impose reasonable controls on the new housing that the Government insists must be built in our area.
In the 7 months since the introduction of the committee system, the Council has moved fast and efficiently and the proposed Local Plan is already going forward for final consultation and then on to the Inspector at a Local Inquiry. Leader of the Liberal Democrat group Fran Wilson said: "I am pleased that the Liberal Democrats have been able to influence matters on Maidstone Borough Council thus enabling the speedy adoption of a Local Plan to shape and control development. Without this in place, the Government would have imposed a Plan which would certainly have meant the loss of control over where future development would be sited and the conditions that could be placed upon them."