The first set of planning application reports to be considered by the new Dorset Council are all now online. One key thing to note is that, at least for the time being, decisions are still going to based on the separate housing land supplies on the previous local authority areas, rather than trying to take the temperature across the whole area. Not that this particularly helps any of the areas. West, Weymouth and North Dorset have all struggled to demonstrate a 5 year supply for some years, and East Dorset declared in December that they too have fallen below a 5 year housing land supply. Only Purbeck are claiming that they have in excess of 5 years - though interestingly their January statement was based on the housing requirement of a 2012 Local Plan (which I am pretty sure is more than 5 years old), and their latest (May) statement is using a 10% buffer (which means they are relying on this being confirmed through the Local Plan examination) and they are also including some of the proposed Local Plan allocations in their supply - which arguably shouldn't be included at this stage. So who knows where they are, right here, right now?
Having said that, there is certainly still lots of movement in the planning arena that could help turn around the deficits. One of the applications coming to the new Western and Southern Planning Committee is the outline application for up to 500 dwellings plus employment, retail and hotel uses at Littlemoor - nearly 4 years after the Local Plan's adoption. As well as the 175 or so affordable dwellings this should also bring in over £4 million on developer S106 contributions - not an insignificant amount.