Councillor slams planning decision

Councillor Andy Heer has criticised a decision by Fife Council's Planning Review Body to allow a wind farm on the side of East Lomond at Drums Farm.

"This application never came to the Area Committee," said Councillor Heer, "it was refused by a planning offier because it contravened so many policies on the siting of wind turbines."

"The applicant then asked for a review by the Planning Review Body. This Body comprising only five councillors, three of them from outwith North East fife then decided to ignore the Howe of Fife Local Plan, the St Andrews and East Fife Local Plan, the ASH report, Fife Council's own Planning Customer Guidelines for Renewable Energy and Fife Council's Supplementary Planning Guidance on Wind Energy and granted planning permission. They also ignored the views of the local Community Council."

"I understand that the decision was by 3 votes to 2, with three councillors from Markinch and Dunfermline determining this decision to allow a windfarm in North East Fife."

"What makes it ironic is that the chair of the Planning Review Body is the same councillor who has been so vocal in the press recently decrying the Council decision on Planning Review, saying that taking away planning decisions from local committees is undemocratic."

"The first I knew of this decision was when a constituent contacted me asking if the windfarm could be stopped. Unfortunately it now appears to be a "done deal" against the wishes of the local community and Fife Council's own policies."

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