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Letters / Obsessed with red tape

I recently wrote a rant about the SIC’s planning department (No role for planning; SN, 10/11/14) and its unnecessary barriers to affordable housing, obstruction to everyday minor developments and draconian obsession with bureaucracy.

What is remarkable in this for me as a regular letter writer/commentator is that I have not received or been aware of one single disagreement or critical comment – wow!

On the other hand I have received a massive number of on the street comments, e-mails and phone calls supporting my views on the dysfunctional planning system here in Shetland.

So listen up SIC – take a grip of your out of date and damaging local plan.

Reign in your wayward planning department obsessed with red tape and talk to the community to arrive at a place that allows affordable housing, simple and affordable procedures with a degree of planning stability, and a real brake on the building standards division.

All over the UK there are growing numbers of local authorities, groups and individuals defying or challenging the stupid planning bureaucracy that is strangling local communities.

A moderate study of what is permitted by planning departments in local authorities throughout the UK reveals many things: one thing that stands out is that the SIC’s planning system and interpretation of Scottish planning guidelines is draconian and working against local needs.

I could put myself forward as the coordinator of several pressure groups against some council actions but that’s not a realistic option.

I do however have time and energy to confront the planning aspect of the SIC, which is a major barrier to all the little people in Shetland.

It would help the cause if local builders voiced their opinions on this but I guess they feel that if they complain about the system, their applications might be delayed!

Vic Thomas