Windfarm opponents stage protest ahead of council meeting

By Twm Owen in Local People

PROTESTERS who fear a council policy could pave the way for new wind farms in Powys picketed today’s county council meeting.

However councillors, who are setting a budget for the upcoming financial year, aren’t discussing the controversial Local Development Plan (LDP).

The planning policy, which will guide development 2026, was amended at a late stage to include local search areas where smaller scale solar and windfarms could be developed.

Jenny Keal, of the Brecon & Radnor Action Team, which is opposed to the policy was part of this morning’s protest at County Hall, Llandrindod Wells.

She said: "Over a hundred people turned out on a wild, windy morning to demand democracy for the residents of Powys on the renewable energy plans in the LDP which threaten to destroy our landscape."

Council officials had ruled ahead of the meeting a bid to hold a further vote on the LDP, proposed by Conservative group leader Councillor Aled Davies, couldn’t be considered at today’s meeting.

Cllr Davies was told he was too late to ’call in’ the cabinet decision.

Ms Keal said: "Cllr Aled Davies addressed the crowd to inform them that the cabinet have refused three motions to debate the LDP in full committee on spurious grounds. Their attitude to democracy has been compared to North Korea. We would like to thank everyone for turning out to support us and to the people who did the hard work organising the protest."

During the meeting the council passed the cabinet’s proposed budget for the 2017/18 financial year, including a recommended 3.9% council tax rise.

The council tax will have to be formally approved on March 7 when figures from Dyfed-Powys Police and town and community council precepts will also be known.

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