'Dirty strategy’ prevents public scrutiny of planning applications, PD laments

The Democratic Party says that the Planning Authority’s decision to prevent access to ‘incomplete’ applications makes it difficult for people to stand up for their rights

The PD described this as an “underhanded manoeuvre” and a “dirty strategy”
The PD described this as an “underhanded manoeuvre” and a “dirty strategy”

The Democratic Party is calling for the immediate restoration of full transparency on planning applications as it hits out at a recent decision by the authority.

Since May, the PA has blocked public scrutiny of development applications by excluding certain details from submissions made by developers. The premise for this is that these applications are ‘incomplete’.

This has prevented the public and journalists from scrutinising pending applications at an early stage.

The PD described this as an “underhanded manoeuvre” and a “dirty strategy”.

PD interim leader Godfrey Farrugia said this decision flies in the face of all the Labour administration's promises for increased transparency.

“It is another betrayal of the electorate's trust. These underhanded actions often slip past the general public's notice and thus the government gets away with it. That is why we must continue to be vigilant as the Democratic opposition in Parliament,” Farrugia said.

He noted that at the last parliamentary committee meeting on the environment the PD wanted to put the issue on the agenda but the chair refused.

The decision has blocked access to a number of mega projects as in the case of a new tower in Tigné and a new fish farm location off Gozo.
“The government is systematically dismantling and making it harder for people to stand up for their rights,” PD deputy leader Timothy Alden said.

READ ALSOMassive new fish farm zone planned off Gozo but details are withheld from public

 

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