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Success for planning team

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THE planning team at Copeland Council is celebrating a remarkable turnaround in its fortunes over the last 12 months.

The team has surpassed a series of Government-set targets for the speed in which it processes applications, with a success rate of over 90 per cent in all categories.

Staff dealt with:

- 93 per cent of 'major' applications, including large office space and housing estates, within the 13-week deadline (65 per cent target);
- 93 per cent of 'minor' applications, including housing estates with fewer than 10 homes and non-major office and retail space, within the eight-week deadline (80 per cent target);
- 95 per cent of 'other' applications, including domestic alterations, within eight weeks (80 per cent target)

The deadlines run from when a planning application is made and validated by the council, to the point of it being approved or declined.

The 2016/17 results represent a significant improvement to the previous 12-month period when the success rate ranged from 58 per cent for minor applications to 79 per cent for other applications.

Pat Graham, Copeland's managing director, said: “This council is focused on growth, and planning is essential to this.

“We’re pleased to have achieved the targets in the speed and quality of the decisions made here, and I am proud of the team for the work they are doing for the borough.”