PJ draft plan to be made public despite protests

PETALING JAYA: The Petaling Jaya City Council (MBPJ) has decided to proceed with a public viewing of the amended Petaling Jaya Local Draft Plan amendments (RTPJ1 and RTPJ2) today despite objections from councillors who have questioned the legality of the procedures.

The amended draft plan which is endorsed by the state government that favours higher density was not given to the councillors. Instead, state executive councillor for local government, research and development Datuk Teng Chang Khim said Mayor Datin Paduka Alina Ahmad had been instructed to override the council’s decision of a lower plot ratio for the transit-oriented development policy.

While the state, through the state planning committee (SPC), is allowed to do so, its instructions to Alina are not in writing — hence this makes the whole exercise illegal.

A meeting between Teng and the 24 councillors scheduled for yesterday was called off. Councillors who spoke on condition of anonymity have accused the state of breaching rules merely to benefit developers who would have to fork out more to build infrastructure and allocate more open space under a lower plot ratio.

“This is extremely unorthodox. We are going to be held accountable for a plan that is not ours although the SPC has forced the council to take out notices. How are we to defend it when we were not shown the new amendments or given time to discuss it?” asked one councillor. The plan will be open for viewing during office hours at the council headquarters for the next few days.

This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on August 7, 2014.

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