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Second resignation over controversial plan for Porthleven homes
12:00pm Thursday 15th August 2013 in News
A second councillor has quit in protest over Porthleven Town Council’s handling of a planning application relating to a proposed housing development.
The resignation of Liz Lane, who only joined the council in May, joins that of former deputy mayor Sue Johns who announced she was leaving last week.
As first reported in the Packet, Mrs Johns left in protest at the way a planning committee meeting was managed, describing it as a “disgrace.”
It was after a member of the Friends of Porthleven group, Ted Gundry, was asked to leave due to his interruptions in a debate about a proposal to build 60 homes on Shrubberies Hill.
The four planning committee members went on to recommend approval of the plans, taking “no notice” of the views of the “majority” of speakers at an earlier public meeting, according to Mrs Johns.
Now, as a result of that decision, Ms Lane has also left, saying it was “with regret.”
Ms Lane said: “I wanted to be part of the council to enable me to help the village and people who reside here, and represent them to the best of my ability and with residents’ best interests, first and foremost. Sadly I feel I can probably do this better by not being part of the current town council.
“On hearing that the planning committee have not listened to the people of the village with regards to the Shrubberies Hill proposed development and are backing the plans, I feel disappointment.
“The public meeting clearly showed that the majority there were against these proposed plans and that the town council are clearly not listening or representing the community.”
She added that while she agreed affordable local housing was needed, she believed it should “not be pushed through when there is clearly more ‘want’ or ‘would like’ than ‘need’.”
Ms Lane suggested that the council look at setting up a town plan – an idea that was raised at the public meeting.
Deputy mayor Daniel Williams, speaking in mayor Mark Berryman’s absence at a meeting of the council last Thursday, said of both Mrs Johns and Ms Lane: “I am sorry that they resigned and I would like to thank both of them for their service to the council – especially Councillor Johns who was ex deputy mayor and worked really hard for the town.”
The council has, however, co-opted two new members in the last month: Alan Jorgensen and Bev Plunkett.
Ms Plunkett, who has lived in Porthleven for almost six years, said: “I look forward to working for Porthleven. I have got a lot of experience, especially in tourism – I used to be tourism officer for Penwith District Council.
“I’m really interested in what goes on in Porthleven and I want to do the best job I can.”
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