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Rate: £24ph (PAYE) £30ph (Umbrella)
Location: London Borough of Tower Hamlets
Duration: 4 Months
About the Role
Providing high quality, specialist professional planning expertise and technical assessment relating to all aspects of development application and pre-application proposals, carrying a case load of more complex, politically sensitive or strategically important, major development proposals.
Provide specialist expertise and act as lead case officer in project managing allocated proposals, applications or projects ensuring that all work is undertaken in accordance with statutory requirements, the Council’s policies and procedures, and to the benefit of the residents of the Borough.
Represent the Council as an expert witness on all issues involving development applications, pre-applications, projects and planning appeals at Examinations and Public Inquires and in court where necessary.
To act as supervisor, mentor or coach to other officers, especially junior officers in the team as required by the allocated Team Leader.
Develop and maintain effective partnership working to promote the work of the area team and engage with the wide range of regular partners in delivery as relevant including but not limited to other Council Services, Members and their advisers, Central Government departments, The Planning Inspectorate, London Local Government, the business community and the local community including representative interest groups and organisations.
To prepare and co-ordinate the response to complaints, Member Enquiries, FOI requests and other related information requested about the service in the area team ensuring they are handled in a timely and professional manner using best practice customer service.
Undertake under own initiative a variety of advanced project management tasks relating to complex proposals, applications, projects and planning appeals, carrying a case load relating to development application matters.
Appoint and manage technical consultants undertaking commissions for the Service Area to ensure that Council policies and financial including all procurement regulations are fully met and complied with.
To participate in advising and liaising with the development industry on their responsibilities under the Localism Act to deliver pre-application consultations on major proposals.
Assist the Team Leader to design, consult on and implement changes to improve the service, including policy development or setting out new procedures, processes and standards to ensure continual effectiveness and efficiency in delivering a quality service including value for money initiatives.
To work with the Team Leader to develop and evaluate best practice approaches to the use of consultant services in the assessment of proposals, applications or appeals.
Organise, prepare and deliver effective development application and related public consultation exercises including the preparation of all materials and other documentation ensuring that all relevant Council Directorates, community organisations, amenity and minority groups, external agencies and Government Bodies are consulted in accordance with the requirements of the Statement of Community Involvement (SCI).
To give sound advice to members of the public, other council departments, elected members and interested parties on development application matters either in person or through correspondence.
Keep senior managers and elected members aware of issues and progress on complex and high profile development application negotiations in the area team in order to maintain a clear corporate policy stance.
Participate in the development and implementation of policies and procedures to ensure that all aspects of the P&BC Service Plan are delivered within corporate objectives.
To maintain and keep up-to-date all development application files and documents on-line (and hard copy where relevant) in an clear ordered system with all material discussions/meetings/paperwork recorded and material documents properly filed as part of any process, to enable the work of the allocated team to be undertaken, as required.
Develop extensive personal skills and technical knowledge base necessary to undertake this post, keeping abreast of new European, Government policies, initiatives and legislative changes
To use ICT systems including databases and information management systems to ensure the development application service operates as efficiently and effectively as possible taking all opportunity to deliver the service in a way which secures value for money for local residents.
To formulate recommendations, either to committee or to the appropriate senior officer, for a decision on planning application planning matters and to be able to justify them in order to ensure that the decisions reached are in accordance with the law, planning policies and government advice, are reasonable and sustainable on appeal or through the courts.
To produce and present reports and documents with guidance from the Team Leader on all development application area team matters at the Development Committees and other Member level bodies.
To undertake complex and often politically sensitive pre-application and application process negotiations concerning planning obligations, affordable housing and infrastructure funding sources such as the Community Infrastructure Levy.
Represent the Council at external meetings, including governmental department meetings, London Local Government meetings, Public Inquiries, Examinations in Public, court hearings as the Council’s expert witness, and to prepare and present detailed advice and reports ensuring that the advice given is in accordance with the best professional standards.
To make decisions on the most appropriate courses of action on development application and pre-application cases, using own initiative and professional judgement, under guidance from the Team Leader
Visit sites alone to check planning proposals and determine whether the scheme is in accordance with policy. Such visits will involve attending locations and encountering situations which may involve personal risk.
To assist the deputy team leader with the monitoring of output volumes and quality of the development applications service in the area team, using the Council’s agreed performance monitoring schemes but paying special attention to national performance indicators.
Comprehensive knowledge and understanding of planning legislation and the associated town planning policy framework at national, strategic and local levels.
Proven knowledge and understanding of key Development Management processes.
Detailed knowledge of the operation of local government in London.
Understanding of staff supervision and management techniques
Town Planning or similar qualification at post graduate level and eligibility for membership of the Royal Town Planning Institute.
A proven track record as town planner dealing with a wide range and complexity of planning applications, appeals and other related work in an urban area.
Experience in taking a lead role in managing complex or major pre and post application cases to deliver sustainable development
Experience of representing the Council (or other organisation) at an appeal (public inquiry or hearing) or examination in public.
Experience of preparing and presenting reports and briefings on complex planning to senior managers and/or elected members.
Experience using own initiative to negotiate and resolve planning issues, including dealing with third party representations, to secure positive outcomes.
Experience of drafting and presenting reports on complex or major development to a Planning Committee.
For more information please call Ash on 02392228275 and Ashley.Maguire@arm.co.uk
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