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KCC leader ‘siing on housing report’
KCC leader Paul Carter has been accused of “siing on” a document
that proves him wrong over Maidstone’s housing need. Cllr Carter told the Downs Mail in February that he had authorised an investigation into the methodol- ogy behind Maidstone Council’s as- sessment that the borough needs 19,600 homes between 2011-2031. Cllr Carter, who lives in Langley and represents Maidstone Rural North, felt this figure – reached by planning consultant GL Hearn – should be much lower.
Former borough council leader Chris Garland claimed in late March to have seen a draft copy of a consultant’s report which had up- held the process used by GL Hearn.
KCC declined our enquiries to see this draft report, so we re- quested it under the Freedom Of Information Act, but KCC replied that the report did not exist. Cllr Garland said: “I have seen the report. I have read it. Paul Carter had it on him when I was with him. The final paragraph says: ‘we would have done it a different way, but we would have come to the same number as 19,600’. The FOI response said KCC had a number of preliminary meetings with Peter Brett Associates Ltd to “explore the potential for them to
complete a review and asked for some outline work to be under- taken [but] it was subsequently de- cided that there was no need for such external work to be completed for the county council to reach its conclusions and respond to the consultation.
“No reliance was placed by the county council on the views of ex- ternal consultants when submitting its consultation response. Accord- ingly there is, and never has been, a report completed by exter- nal consultants that can be shared with you.” The
4 Medical centre
‘going ahead’ THE man behind the Maidstone Medical Centre says the scheme will still move forward – despite threatening to pull out if the Newn- ham Court proposalwas rejected. Franz Dickmann, president of
Another truck going nowhere
A HOME owner has been telling the Downs Mail how this poor lorry driver became the latest victim of a notorious no through road in Maidstone.
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Kent Institute of Medicine and Sur- gery, submitted a letter to Maid- stone Council chief executive Alison Broom a few days before the planning committee decided not to allow Land Securities’ 28,000sqm retail development near M20 Junc- tion 7. Councillors felt the scheme would have been detrimental to the town centre. Last year Mr Dickmann was
given planning permission to build a 98,000sqm KIMS extension – MMC – that would include hospi- tals, a university and rehabilitation village. His letter said: “Should the Land Securities deal not be approved I will seriously reconsider investing in this scheme [MMC] and will therefore concentrate my attention on the alternative locations in Ash- ford or Kings Hill.” However, after the 25
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July 2014 No. 207 News Paper funds to end
LOCAL charities are to lose a vital income stream inadvertently through Maidstone Coun- cil’s success in recycling.
UCA leaves town
THE University for the Creative Arts is this month closing its doors in Maidstone after 150 years.
12 Road figures concern
KCC is basing its traffic forecasts for some new housing schemes on projections from de- velopers, it has emerged.
ANN Barnes has managed to weather the storm that followed a controversial C4 fly-on- the-wall documentary.
Vandals wreck wall
ANCIENT structure was damaged in Loose Valley.27
New council leader CLLR Blackmore elected. 32
Crime Reports 34
A MOTOROBIKE cover was stolen in Tovil - the third similar incident reported within a few weeks.
Parish Councils 34
A DOG walkers group from Loose met for the first time, with one person suggesting that profes- sional dog walkers should be charged for using the parish play- ing field; the family of the late Sylvia Cuthbert, a former Tovil parish councillor, would welcome a bench in her memory.
VIEWS on parking tickets, a sign advertising a new development, immigration and the cost of a night out in Maidstone are aired.
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