Here is the open letter from POW to Tom Horwood, Waverley Borough Council Chief Executive.
Waverley Borough Council Council Offces
The Burys Godalming GU7 1HR
For the attention of Mr Tom Horwood, Chief Executive
Dear Mr Horwood
29th August 2018
Open Letter to Waverley Borough Council (WBC) regarding the challenges from CPRE and POW to the Waverley Local Plan Housing Numbers
POW and the council tax payers of Waverley are asking why WBC is wasting so much money defending the challenges from CPRE and POW, which if successful will reduce the housing requirement for the whole of Waverley Borough. Yes, of course, more houses are needed. But in line with Government policy they should be the right houses in the right places. Why should Waverley take Woking’s overspill? Reducing the housing requirement will relieve the pressure to build, build, build; in greenfields and at unsustainable locations, putting pressure on Waverley’s already over-stretched infrastructure.
WBC has budgeted £200,000 for the defence of the s113 claims, even though, much has been made by WBC itself as to how that money could be better spent. Yet nowhere in their meetings has WBC considered the “do nothing” option – not defending POW’s and CPRE’s challenges.
Furthermore WBC voted to allocate £100,000 to defending the s288 challenge to the Secretary of State (SoS) despite only being an interested party. Why does the SoS need WBC’s help, after all the SoS declined to spend any money as an interested party to the s113 claims? Again, the Council appears to have blindly signed up to this money, without considering the “do nothing” approach.
As tax payers of Waverley we should have comprehensive answers to the questions belowe
1. According to para 2.1 of WBC’s Governance statement it has a duty to make “sure that public money is … used economically, effciently and effectively”, and to act in the public interest (para 3.1). Is allocating £300,000 to defend these challenges an economic and/or an effective use of public money?
2. Why is WBC proposing to spend £300,000 on supporting a single developer. In whose interest is it to continue this defence, the council tax payers of Waverley or the developers of Dunsfold Park?
POW Campaign Ltd on behalf of the PROTECT OUR WAVERLEY (POW) Campaign
Cllr John Gray (Audit Committee Chairman) Graeme Clark (Chief Financial Offcer)
Bea Philpott (Haslemere Herald), Daniel Gee (Farnham Herald), Andre Langlois (Surrey Advertiser), Jack Fiehn (BBC Surrey), Tom Cantoni (Eagle Radio)