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Changes to Town and Country by year-end—Minister
Town and Country Planning will be restructured and reorganised by the end of 2012 says Planning Minister Bhoe Tewarie. Tewarie made the announcement while addressing the media yesterday prior to a meeting with Town and Country Planning staff. The restructuring of Town and Country Planning would form part of a Planning and Development Bill to go to Parliament by September.
Tewarie said changes under consideration included developing some of the authority of Town and Country Planning to local Government jurisdictions and establishing that there would be no construction beyond 300 feet in terms of contours. Tewarie said he had recently received a report from the Planning Task Force which made recommendations for significant changes in the organisation. “These changes will be far-reaching as they have implications for how the development process in T&T takes place,” Tewarie said. He said the changes would affect both physical development and land use.
Tewarie said permissions given in the past as well as persons building without permissions had resulted in problems such as the recent flooding issues. “This meeting is to signal that Town and Country Planning will be going in a different direction,” he said. “What this requires is a change of disposition, a change of attitude and an increased sense of responsibility and obligation to public duty in order to help manage the development of this country in a reasonable way,” Tewarie said. Tewarie said the meeting would also address complaints about the organisation. “There have been complaints about how long we take to do things, about how citizens are treated by Town and Country Planning and there have also been complaints about instances of conflict of interest,” he said.
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