Council demands apology over "false" Local Plan claim

NewsUpdated: 12 July 2023Planning

Councillors voted overwhelmingly for the South West Hertfordshire MP to withdraw and publicly apologise for publishing inaccurate information about the council’s Local Plan.

Gagan Mohindra inaccurately claimed in a leaflet that Three Rivers District Council had plans to build over 1,000 new dwellings in the precious Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).

A motion put forward at Tuesday’s (11 July) Full Council meeting was passed to ask for the council’s Chief Executive to demand the Parliamentarian to withdraw and publicly apologise for his inaccurate claim within five working days and assure the council he will not do this again.

Three Rivers District Council Leader Cllr Sarah Nelmes said: “The council has not proposed or supported any housing development within the Chilterns AONB and has never consulted any site within the AONB as a potential development site within our emerging Local Plan.

“In fact, sites that were promoted by landowners and developers within the AONB for the Local Plan were rejected by this council including two recent planning applications in March for the Green Street site in Chorleywood.

“We have proven time and time again that this council is committed to protecting our precious Green Belt and AONB whilst continuing to work hard to deliver our Local Plan that will help meet our future population and economic growth through much-needed affordable homes and infrastructure.

“I have previously written to Mr Mohindra asking for him to withdraw and apologise for the confusion and upset his misleading leaflet caused to residents. I have not received a response back.

“I hope the MP will apologise and take ownership for the hurt and confusion caused, and double-check his facts.”

Twenty-six councillors voted for the motion, zero were against, and nine abstained.