Sheffield councillors refused to make a decision on a planning application after finding out the public consultation hadn’t yet finished.
The Star writes:
Officers advised the planning board that it should press ahead and make a decision about a scheme to convert the former Gilders car showroom off Ecclesall Road South. But councillors were surprised and unhappy when they found out the consultation wasn’t due to finish until two days after the meeting. The scheme had received 34 objections but a problem with the council’s website meant people couldn’t access its planning portal so the deadline to comment was extended. But then officers said the board should make a decision and if there were any objections afterwards, officers and the chairman of the committee could discuss them. The planning board said this was an unprecedented request and it would not be ‘open and transparent’ if they made a decision before people had chance to object. Coun Peter Rippon, who co-chairs the committee, was surprised by the officers’ suggestion. He said: ‘It is unprecedented for this to be put forward to the committee before the consultation period ends. I had a briefing with officers last week and a site visit and this was never mentioned.’
Officers said developers wanted the decision quickly but the board deferred it’…