Four days before the deadline of 16th November, the Secretary of State has issued a ‘holding direction’ to Hertfordshire County Council. This prevents them from issuing planning permission for their and Veolia’s monstrous waste incinerator at New Barnfield.
The notice, which has no time limit, stops the development in its tracks until the Secretary of State decides what to do next. It is likely to be weeks, but may be months, until the Secretary of State decides. Until then, everything is on hold and no development work can go ahead.
It is the first hurdle towards a ‘call-in’ and will allow the Secretary of State (and his civil servants) to decide precisely what questions a planning inquiry needs to assess, should one be required.
Paul Zukowskyj, HAI exec member commented “It would seem the Secretary of State is looking at this issue much more closely than any of the Conservative councillors on the committee did. He has not rejected our issues and arguments out of hand, as the councillors did, and it’s looking increasingly likely that we’ll get a call in.
“If the application is called in, I have every confidence that an independent, impartial and experienced inspector, appointed by the DCLG, will realise almost immediately what an abomination this plan is and will advise the Secretary of State to reject it.
Paul continued “I would like to thank the Secretary of State and his officers for this intervention and I look forward to the Secretary of State’s next decision as I’m entirely confident he’ll call it in, it’s the right and proper thing to do.”