RED-faced council chiefs are consulting the public again over whether to grant an operating permit to a controversial glass bottling factory after the first one was judged invalid.
The massive plant at Elton, near Chester, had faced immediate closure, with up to 200 job losses, after a judge ruled last year that a Pollution Prevention and Control Permit (PPC) had been unlawfully granted by Chester City Council.
Operators Quinn Glass Ltd lost its appeal against that ruling but Lord Justice Buxton ruled the PPC permit, although invalid, would remain in place until Chester City Council had a chance to decide whether to issue a fresh permit.
A new PPC permit application was lodged in January and last Thursday the council's cabinet decided to support the submission subject to a public consultation.
Representations on the draft decision can be made to Jan Rowley, Strategic Director (Community Services) at the Chester City Council address or via e-mail to
firstname.lastname@example.org before September 7, 2006.
If the council does not receive any representations from the public, the council's decision will be notified to Quinn within 5 working days after the deadline.
If the authority does receive representations, they will be considered by the council and a decision will be finalised within 15 working days of the end of the period for representations.
The Quinn Glass factory was also built without planning permission and a retrospective application is under consideration following a planning inquiry.
Evidence was heard by planning inspector J Stuart Nixon who sat at The Queen Hotel from last November until March of this year.
He was expected to write up a report within two months which by now will have been passed to Ruth Kelly, Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government, who could take up to a year to make a decision.
Meanwhile, Chester City Council has revealed it has set aside about £615,000 from the current and coming financial years to pay for legal costs relating to the Quinn case.