Unauthorised development - calls for enforcement action etc
Flintshire County Council
Mr X complained that the Council had failed to take appropriate and timely action in relation to non-compliance with a notice that it served on his neighbour to remedy the condition of their land. He also complained that the Council had failed to respond to his emails with any specific information or substantial update on the case.
Following the start of an investigation by the Ombudsman, the Council proposed to take the following action to move the matter forward. The Council agreed to write to the neighbour to reinforce the need to comply with the notice within 3 months. In this respect, the Council considered it appropriate to allow the neighbour a final opportunity to comply with the notice and the letter would make clear that the Council reserved the right to pursue more formal enforcement action, including direct action and/or the commencement of a criminal investigation, if there was no compliance within the set timescale. The Council also agreed to write to Mr X to apologise for the delays in communicating with him promptly and to reassure him that the Council continued to engage with the neighbour to secure compliance with the notice. It also agreed to offer Mr X a payment of £100 in recognition of the time and trouble incurred in pursuing his complaint with the Ombudsman. The Council agreed to undertake all of these actions within 1 month. The Council also agreed to provide evidence to the Ombudsman that it had carried out a review oft he case and its position after the 3 month time limit given to the neighbour had elapsed.
The Ombudsman considered these actions to be reasonable and so discontinued the investigation on the basis that the complaint had been settled.