Remember how 8 March 2008 was seen as a watershed of sorts and people were said to be feeling more empowered after that? Now’s the real test. The Penang Local Plan will soon be put on public display for public comments.
The plan will show the detailed conditions for land use, planning and development in microscopic detail. This means you will be able to tell precisely what is allowed and not allowed in your neighbourhood.
But for the process to work, you need to take a good look at the draft when it is displayed and then submit your objections or views to the local government. Little point complaining later. So look out for the display soon.
As for the One-Stop-Centre being slow in approving applications – never mind the ranking, I think it’s good if it means that the local government are following proper procedure and listening to neigbours’ objections. But in the case of big projects, we need to hear the views of more than just the immediate neighbours for such projects will affect a wider surrounding area.
This report is from theSun:
Penang local plan draft in final stages
GEORGE TOWN (Sept 21, 2010): The draft of the Penang local plan is now in the final stages with its final presentation by the appointed consultant to be held this Friday.
Local government and traffic management committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow said the local plan, which provides detailed conditions and requirements for land use, planning and development, will be tabled and approved after taking into consideration public opinions and views.
“We will put it up for viewing for between 60 and 90 days and the public is welcomed to submit any objections, views or opinions about it during the period,” he said, adding that the plan may be ready for public viewing in two to three months’ time.
Once the local plan is gazetted, land use and development plans will have to adhere to the plan.
Chow said currently, development plans and land conversions were done according to town and country planning laws where there was a hearing process for objections to be heard by stakeholders or those in the area.
“This process has slowed down the One Stop Centre (OSC) in processing development applications so once the local plan is approved and gazetted, then the OSC will be able to approve applications faster as it only need sto refer to the gazetted local plan,” he said.
Chow was speaking at a press conference on the council’s OSC which was ranked last in the Local Government and Housing Ministry’s OSC Portal which had put up the KPI of the OSC of each state.
Penang ranked last with only 79.32% (an average of 78.46% for MPPP and 81.44% for MPSP) while other states had higher percentages of around 90%. The national average was 90.04%.