The Belfast Telegraph has reported that nearly £500,000 in 'bonus payments' were made to Planning Service staff. The paper says the figures were obtained by it under a Freedom of Information request and comments that "they are particularly disturbing becuase some civil servants were paid huge bonuses despite a series of high-profile failures".
The paper also notes that the Assembly's Public Accounts Committee found the planning system "not fit for purpose" and that only one out of six Divisional Planning Offices - that based in Omagh - met all its targets for processing applications. According to the paper the Public Accounts Committee found that customer satisfaction levels with the Planning Service had deteriorated from 76% to 32% in the last decade.
Read more on the paper's website.