The Minerals and Waste Planning team is responsible for all minerals and waste-related development and planning issues. The team is responsible for determining planning applications for minerals and waste sites and for policy development of the Minerals and Waste Development Plan Documents. In addition, the team is also responsible for determining planning applications for the county council’s own development policies (such as schools, roads and libraries). Other planning applications, such as those for householders and businesses, are dealt with by the local district or borough council.
The work of the Minerals and Waste Planning team is divided into two distinct areas.
Essex County Council is responsible for determining planning applications for mineral extraction and associated development (such as quarries, mineral wharves, rail heads and sand and gravel processing plants) and waste proposals (including landfill sites, waste transfer/recycling sites and scrap yards). In addition the council deals with applications for its own development (including new schools, school extensions, road development where the council is the highways authority as well as development for other council responsibilities – such as libraries and country parks). This includes providing application forms and guidance documentation
for those submitting applications, and ensuring that the planning application process
is fair and transparent. ECC also ensures that the planning process is accessible to all, and that opportunities for public involvement
in the planning process are actively promoted.
Planning policy is responsible for policy development, as it provides a framework that is used to guide decisions about individual applications.
The Minerals and Waste Planning team carries out regular public consultations, to which interested parties are encouraged to respond. Consultations affect medium to long term policy decisions, and have a direct effect on policy-making and planning within the county.
The Minerals and Waste Planning team also promote policies that are currently being prepared. These policies are not yet on the statute books, but are expected to become law in the near future, and so are considered when making planning decisions.
Essex County Council encourages residents and interested parties to become actively involved in the planning process, not only in response to applications, but also in terms of policy. The Statement of Community Involvement
outlines the way in which individuals and groups can play an active role in influencing the long term policy decisions of Essex County Council.