Do you know your CIL from your Section 106?
28 Nov 11
In the days of planning applications for substantial developments, local planning authorities used to negotiate agreements with developers for contributions under Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (S106); all based on centrally instructed guidance. The sums agreed would then be spent on infrastructure and services projects such as highways and community facilities. Occasionally, funds would be allocated to education services and even affordable housing or environmental physical improvements. It was a fairly straight-forward procedure with Councils basing their decisions on funding allocation through evidence based policies.
On 6 April 2011, everything changed with the introduction of the Community Infrastructure Levy (Amendment) Regulations 2011 in England and Wales (or CILs if you prefer!). The removal of essentially an “in-kind” threshold arrangement under S106 means local Councils now have freedom of choice to levy on new developments and allocate contributions in support specific schemes including highways infrastructure, community neighbourhood projects. You may believe there are no differences to S106 but there exists subtle differences.
CILs allow local Councils to allocate funds to a much wider range of projects that could have a greater impact to the local community in terms of real growth. Local communities can have more of a say in setting the priorities for funding so CILs are therefore more flexible; whilst at the same time encouraging higher levels of inward investment. CILs also provide developers with more transparency of contribution expected 'up front' – a clear indication of developers understanding additional benefits brought to the local area beyond that of just a new development scheme. The CIL applies to most new developments and is based simply on size and type of new development.
With neighbourhoods having a direct say, it is another indication of how localism is now driving the agenda for change. As we await the new Planning Policy Framework scheduled for April 2012, inevitably the new CIL system has already raised some issues. So it will come as no surprise that there is now a consultation on proposed reforms for CILs, and Chamber members are requested to feedback on this consulation.
Please contact, Ian Welland, Head of Area Development on firstname.lastname@example.org for more details or to send your feedback.
For a copy of the relevant legislation and consultation, please see the links below.