Published: Thursday, 15th September 2016
Government launches consultations on further changes to the neighbourhood planning regime and improving the use of planning conditions…
Hot on the heels of the publication of the Neighbourhood Planning Bill the government has launched consultations on key elements of the legislation: further changes to the neighbourhood planning regime and, separately, improving the use of planning conditions.
In the case of neighbourhood plans (NPs), three main areas are involved:
- Procedures for changing Neighbourhood Plans and Orders
- The examination of a NP proposal where it has been changed and a NP has already been made in relation to that area
- The requirements for local planning authorities to review their Statements of Community Involvement.
In the case of the conditions the focus is on what can be done to reduce the number of possibly unnecessary or otherwise unacceptable conditions attached to permissions.
The document from the Department for Communities and Local Government pointed out that the cumulative impact of a local planning authority imposing a number of conditions when they grant planning permission can present considerable burdens for applicants as well as the local planning authority itself.
The government is consulting on a proposed process to prohibit pre-commencement conditions from being imposed unless the local authority has the written agreement of the applicant. Also under consideration is the potential wider application of primary legislation to prohibit conditions in targeted circumstances.
The Bill is due its second reading in the Commons on 10 October when MPs will have a first opportunity to discuss its provisions.