Important step closer for CaSPlan
The Highland Council today (Wednesday 4 November) took a major step in agreeing a future vision and strategy for development of the Caithness and Sutherland area over the next 20 years with councillors’ approval of the Caithness and Sutherland Proposed Local Development Plan (CaSPlan).
Once formally adopted it will replace the Caithness Local Plan and Sutherland Local Plan and will be used to guide decisions on planning applications in both Caithness and Sutherland.
The key stage reached today means that the CaSPlan document becomes the Council’s settled view for planning the future of the area and can now be used as a material consideration when considering planning applications.
The committee also approved a Proposed Action Programme for delivering the Plan which will be discussed with Community Planning Partners prior to publication. This outlines the practical things that have to be done to make things happen. Further work on environmental assessments and discussions will now take place before both the Proposed Plan and the Proposed Action Programme go out to full public consultation early next year.
Chair of the Council’s Planning, Development and Infrastructure Committee, Councillor Audrey Sinclair said: “I would like to thank all the individuals, community groups and other organisations for taking the time to give us their comments and for helping us get to this important milestone. It is vital that people get involved in the plan making process, especially as now the Proposed Plan will carry some weight when it comes to managing developments in Caithness and Sutherland.
“The consultation starting in January will give an opportunity for people to read the Plan and let us know what they support or what should be changed. After that we enter formal stages to finalise and adopt the Plan so I would encourage as many folk as possible to take part.”
When the Council begins the consultation, details of it will be publicised in the local press. The Council will also notify people who submitted comments at earlier stages of the CaSPlan process and the immediate neighbours of the sites identified for future development in the Proposed Plan.