Planning Obligations and Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL)

Advice about what sort of contributions the council may ask for from developments.

Planning Obligations (S106) are a way of requiring developers to provide, or contribute directly to, the provision of necessary services and infrastructure required by their development. 

Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) is a contribution made by individual developments to a fund used to provide infrastructure and services in a specified area.

National policy requires that any developer contribution sought must be:

  • necessary to make the development acceptable in planning terms
  • directly related to the development
  • fairly and reasonably related in scale and kind

In addition, recent changes to regulations mean that authorities will only be able to accept a maximum of five contributions towards infrastructure projects or types of infrastructure.

Affordable housing has been specifically excluded from the provisions of the CIL Regulations 2010. S106 agreements will continue to be the preferred mechanism for securing affordable housing through the planning process and financial contributions will not be restricted by the pooling restrictions.

Planning Obligations Supplementary Planning Document

In June 2012 the council adopted a Planning Obligations Supplementary Planning Document.

This document has been superseded by CIL Regulations 2010.  The document provides a useful guide to the type and amount of contributions which may be requested from statutory consultees and service providers through the planning application process. Any contributions sought will be secured through a legal agreement and will have to meet the three tests set out above.

The SPD and associated documents can be downloaded here:

Community Infrastructure Levy [CIL]

 

How does the Council deal with Viability Assessments submitted at application or pre-application stage?

In response to a Financial Viability Assessment being submitted by a planning applicant as part of an application or a potential developer at the pre-application stage, the Council will commission an independent assessment (usually undertaken by the Valuation Office Agency who can only work for the public sector, direct).  This work is undertaken at the applicants cost, the scale of fees will be advised and agreed before work commences, and the money for the initial response must be provided to the Council, before any work is undertaken.  The Council will then pay the commissioned consultant.

Any supplementary work (or further reviews) would be likely to be charged for at an hourly rate (unless a further fixed fee is agreed) and would only be undertaken if seen relevant by the Council, and following confirmation from the Applicant that they will pay the additional fees.  These fees are paid at the completion of the exercise but the hourly rates will be identified before work commences.

Prior to any work being undertaken it is crucial that sufficient information is available.  The information will comprise a full viability assessment and any further additional information required to undertake the appraisal/assessment.  All this must be provided to the Council prior to any work being undertaken.  The Council will then forward it on to the consultant undertaking the appraisal/assessment.