To scrutinise the evidence base, the area options and the favoured option for introducing the Article 4 Direction in the Gwynedd Local Planning Authority Area to enable the management of the transfer in use from residential dwellings to holiday use (second homes and holiday accommodation).
· To accept the report, noting the observations made during the meeting.
· To recommend to the Cabinet to approve the favoured option in terms of introducing the Article 4 Direction, namely Option 4: The whole of Gwynedd (Gwynedd Local Planning Authority Area)'.
· To request that the planning policy officers should re-visit the threshold to define over-provision of holiday accommodation and second homes in communities, during the process of drafting the new Local Development Plan.
The report was presented by the Cabinet Member for the Environment, Assistant Head of Environment Department and Team Leader (Joint Planning Policy Unit, Anglesey and Gwynedd). Attention was drawn briefly to the following principal points:
- Members were reminded that three further class uses had now come into effect, namely:
o C3 - Main Residence
o C5 - Second Home
o C6 - Holiday accommodation
- It was confirmed that house owners could change the use class of their houses without a planning application and the Article 4 Direction would control this, by adding the enforcement to make a planning application prior to changing the use class of their houses.
- It was emphasised that introducing the Article 4 was a way to manage housing stock within areas, and therefore facilitating the ability of local people to buy housing within their communities.
- It was reported that the process of introducing the direction was new and unprecedented and it was confirmed that the department was in the process of receiving legal counsel for the different aspects of the process.
- It was explained that the Article 4 direction was not relevant to the Eryri National Park planning authority area. However, officers in the department were working closely with the Park to share benefits/experiences.
- It was reported that there had been an increase in the numbers that transferred from being a residential unit to being a holiday accommodation business paying non-domestic rates.
- It was noted that consideration had been given to a series of area options before the officers concluded on the best way of introducing the Article 4 Direction, namely:
o Option 1: Dwyfor (Government pilot area)
o Option 2: Community/Town/City Council areas where the current provision of holiday homes is greater than 15% of the housing stock
o Option 3: Vulnerable Areas (areas under threat)
o Option 4: The whole of Gwynedd (Gwynedd Local Planning Authority Area).
- It was confirmed that the officers' research suggested that the favoured option to introduce the Article 4 direction was the whole of Gwynedd (Option 4). However, it was noted that it was not possible to be certain of the implications to the area. It was assumed that this was the simplest option going forward as there would be no doubt which areas fall under the control of the direction - apart from areas under the planning control of the Eryri National Park area.
Members were given an opportunity to ask questions and offer observations. During the discussion, the following matters were raised:
A member noted that he was pleased that the recommendation was clear but was concerned about the possible impact on areas under the excess threshold for second homes and holiday accommodation of 15% of the housing stock.
The Assistant Head of the Environment Department explained that the implementation of the Article 4 direction would not change planning policies and the policies of the Joint Local Development Plan, would continue to be operational following the introduction of article ... view the full minutes text for item 5