North Yorkshire and York Councils Pull Out of Incinerator Legal Fight
2:33pm 17th January 2014
(Updated 4:22pm 17th January 2014)
Plans for a legal challenge to a government decision which pulled £65 million from plans for a waste incinerator at Allerton Park have been ditched by York and North Yorkshire councils.
It was due in court at the end of January but after taking legal advice the councils have decided it "would not be in the public interest" for the councils to continue with their legal challenge.
If they had taken the case to court and won the Department of the Environment would have to re-start the process which removed the finance from the project. But the councils say it is now clear that the same conclusions would be reached and the funding for the project would not be reinstated.
David Bowe, Corporate Director for Business and Environmental Services at North Yorkshire County Council, speaking on behalf of both councils said:
“The advice is that the Councils’ case is strong and we continue to believe that Defra made an unlawful decision, but it is clear from this and other recent decisions that Defra do not wish to continue to support projects of this type anymore. Even if we win, we cannot guarantee that we would get the Credits back. We worked closely with Defra for many years on this project and feel very disappointed by the way they have conducted themselves but we now have to accept that the argument is not worth pursuing."
“The loss of Credits is a blow but it doesn’t mean the project is over. We are continuing to work with our contractor, AmeyCespa, to mitigate the loss of Waste Infrastructure Credits and complete the last details of the contract. The final decision on whether project remains affordable and value for money will be made later in 2014 when this work is completed.”
A spokesperson for the Department of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said: “We believe our decision was entirely lawful and in the interest of taxpayers - we are pleased North Yorkshire Council has withdrawn its claim.”
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