Press release

Ensuring local communities benefit from development

Ministers launch a review to ensure people benefit from local development in their area.

Buiding plans
  • ensuring communities benefit from new housing
  • support for increased local infrastructure
  • review to propose new measures

The review will come forward with proposed measures to ensure that developers are meeting their contribution to improved local infrastructure.

The government wants to ensure that local communities can raise funds to support the development of transport infrastructure, schools, health services and recreation facilities. That’s why the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) was introduced in 2010 to help support the delivery of local infrastructure, we want to make sure it is working effectively.

The review is part of the government’s ongoing reforms to streamline the planning system and improve how local communities benefit from development and build the houses the country needs.

Communities Secretary Greg Clark said:

Our planning reforms have ended the top-down bureaucracy of the past that pitted neighbours against developers – which means more than a million homes have been granted planning permission since 2010.

We now want to go even further, so we can ensure communities can directly see the benefit of new development and can be confident that new homes come with the infrastructure to support them.

This independent review will examine how we can improve the community infrastructure levy to ensure it best benefits local communities whilst delivering the houses the country needs.

Planning Minister Brandon Lewis said:

Where communities benefit from development they are also more likely to support it, and the Community Infrastructure Levy has played a vital role in contributing to local infrastructure and creating that local support.

As a government we want to build more homes, supported by people who live in the area and this review will look for new ways in which proposed development can benefit whole areas.

Since its introduction in 2010, CIL has provided a faster and fairer means of collecting developer contributions to local infrastructure. This has been done via tariff-style contributions on many large developments within a local planning authority’s area.

Proceeds are typically spent by councils on local infrastructure projects, such as roads and schools and are an alternative to traditional ‘Section 106’ planning obligations negotiated on an application-by-application basis.

Almost 100 councils are now charging CIL and more than 200 councils are working towards introducing it.

The review will:

  • assess whether CIL is meeting its objectives of providing a faster, fairer, more certain and transparent means of funding infrastructure through developer contributions
  • look at the relationship between CIL and s.106 agreements
  • consider how reliefs and exemptions operate and whether the neighbourhood element of CIL is helping to increase community support for development

Further information

Liz Peace will lead and chair an independent panel carrying out the review. It is drawn from a wide range of interest groups and will assess CIL as well as recommend changes to improve its operation in support of the government’s wider housing and growth objectives.

The call for evidence questionnaire is open and it has been published alongside the group’s terms of reference.

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Published 19 November 2015