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Service Specific Privacy Notices

Planning Services Privacy Notice

East Northamptonshire Council is committed to protecting your privacy when you use our services. This Privacy Notice explains how we use information about you and how we protect your privacy.

This Privacy notice relates to Planning Management, Planning Policy and Planning Enforcement. The notice explains what information the council needs in order to deliver planning services and fulfil our statutory obligations.

Your personal information – what we need and why

East Northamptonshire Council (the data controller) collects your personal information to allow us to provide the service you have asked for which may include: 

  • making an application
  • contributing to applications and consultations
  • making enquiries, requests and complaints
  • reporting alleged breaches of planning control
  • making enquiries regarding ownership or who is responsible for land, buildings or structures where a breach of planning control has occurred or a notice is issued
  • contributing to planning policy documents including the local plan and neighbourhood plans
  • expressing an interest in self and custom build housing

The personal information we collect includes:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Contact details (email  address/telephone number)
  • Health data (only where required as evidence in respect of fee exemptions)
  • Financial information (where a viability assessment is required)
  • Other information supplied on the application form, survey or otherwise supplied by you in the course of us handling your case. 

We may also receive your information from other organisations referring you to us for services or for us to carry out our statutory duties. All complaints are taken under a duty of confidence.

We will not collect any personal data from you (or from third parties providing your data) that we do not need.

What allows us to collect your data?

It is necessary to collect and hold this information so we can deliver services and statutory obligations of Planning Management, Planning Enforcement and Planning Policy. Its also helps us to monitor service provision and improve where we need to. The legal basis we rely on may vary depending on the service you require. Please see Appendix 2 for legislation we operate under which makes it necessary to process your personal data. In some circumastances we may rely on  your consent to hold your contact details for the purposes of regular communications / updates and to enable a co-ordinated response for those requesting to speak at Committee.

How we will use the information we hold about you?

We will collect information about you so that we can:

  • assess fee exemptions
  • advise you about a consultation
  • determine an application
  • provide updates
  • tell you the outcome of an application, enquiry, request or investigation
  • notify you of the date of public meetings
  • notify you if an appeal is received
  • issue and serve a notice
  • identify the demand for self and custom build housing

How we keep your information safe.

The council takes data security seriously.  The information you provide will be held securely as part of your case records in our planning services management system. Access is only provided to authorised staff.

Who do we share your data with?

We may need to share your personal information internally within planning services and other teams to deal with your enquiry. No other third parties have access to your information unless the law expressly allows them to.

Planning Management:

Legally we have a public duty to make available information relating to planning applications as a public register. Our public register is published on the council’s website. The register must include the applicant’s name and address, what the application is for, any plans or documents submitted and details of the decision. Comments received during consideration of the application are also published on our website.  

Consultation and notification (by letter, site notice and/or advert) of applications is a requirement of legislation and includes applicant’s name, site address and proposal.  Those informed may include, but are not limited to, statutory consultees, public bodies, town/parish councils, councillors, neighbouring properties and the local press.

Apart from the applicant’s name and address the following information will be redacted before the application/comment can be viewed:

  • applicant (phone number, email, signature)
  • public contributor (name, phone number, email, signature)

For agents and consultees, direct emails, telephone numbers and signatures will be redacted.

As a general rule we do not publicise pre-applications enquiries, however we may on occasion need to release the information for requests under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, Enviromental Information Regulations 2004 and other relevant legislation. If a formal planning application is submitted following pre-application advice we may refer in the planning officer’s report to the pre-application and our response to it.

Where a number of individuals request to speak at Committee on the same application, the name and phone number is given to Democratic Services who may, with consent, provide that information to other potential speakers.  This is so a co-ordinated response can be presented.

If an appeal is made against a decision, the Appeal Inspector will ask for copies of all the documents we hold, including public comments, and a list of the names and addresses of everyone we have contacted about the appeal.  A copy of all the information given to the Appeal Inspector must also be sent to the appellant.

Viability assessments may be made publicly available following the National Planning Policy Framework and associated guidance. An exemption from publication may be applicable where we as a planning authority are satiesfied that the relevant criteria for exclusion on the grounds of commercial sensitivity have been met.

Health data collected for the purposes of fee exemptions will not be made public.

We maintain a register of applications to investigate a high hedge complaint and subsequent remedial notices issued, this register is not made publically available. 

Important

In order to ensure that no unnecessary personal data is published online, please consider the following:

  • We strongly recommend that you indicate any documents (in whole or in part) containing personal information that you do not want to be seen by the public.  However we have a legal duty to make certain details available, so we cannot guarantee that such requests will be approved;
  • Please do not include any information in your application, comments or supporting documents which is not required for the planning process (see our guidance on making an application or comment for more information);
  • In particular please refrain from sending us sensitive information such as health or medical details where these are not required;
  • Please also refrain from including personal information about other people (including family members) in your correspondence with us, unless the individual concerned has consented and you can provide evidence of this consent.

Planning Enforcment:

Investigations

The Council will always seek to maintain the confidentiality of the complainant at all times.  However, where an enforcement action is taken to Court, it may be necessary to identify the complainant.

Notices

The Town and Country Act 1990 requires us to have a public Enforcement Register containing a record of certain formal notices issued.  Our register is published on the council’s website.

  • Details displayed in the register include the notice type, site address, dates (issued, served and compliance required by) and a copy of the notice
  • We provide all those issued/served a notice with the names and addresses of all other interested parties (owners, mortgagees)
  • If appealed, we inform neighbours and Ward Councillors and may put up a site notice.  This will include the appellant’s name
  • The Appeal Inspector will ask for a list of the names and addresses of everyone we have contacted about the appeal
  • A copy of all the information given to the Appeal Inspector must be sent to the appellant
  • The Appeal Inspector will copy to the appellant and the Local Planning Authority any representations made

Planning Policy:    

Comments received on Planning Policy consultations will be made publically available; however no personal information is shared.     

Self and Custom Build Register – no personal information is shared however details of demand and requirements may be provided to the North Northamptonshire Joint Planning & Delivery Unit and an appointed planning consultant to enable them to collate and assess the demand. We may contact you for the purpose of consultation on major development applications (this type of processing may involve profiling/automated processing). If you do not wish to have this type of contact you have a right to object.

How long do we keep your data?

We will only keep your information for the minimum period necessary. The information outlined in this privacy statement will be kept after all action on your case has finished and the period required by the Council for legal or audit purposes has passed and in any event in line with our Information Retention Schedule.  All information will be held securely and will be securely destroyed when it is no longer required.

Some information regarding planning management retention guidelines can be found on our website.

Your Data Rights and Our Privacy Statement

For further information about how East Northamptonshire Council uses your personal data, including your rights as a data subject, please see our Privacy Policy on the website.  If you are unhappy with the use of your personal data or for further information please contact the council’s Data Protection Officer

Appendix 2