CIL BILL?

Pretty good CIL scoop by EGi, not yet denied by anyone.

Apparently two of the CIL working group’s recommendations are that:

– section 106 agreements rather than CIL should be the delivery mechanism for infrastructure in relation to large developments;

– there should be a nationally standard low level of CIL.

The recomendations may be included in the forthcoming Neighbourhood Planning and Infrastructure Bill to the extent that primary legislation would be needed.

They certainly chime with the BPF’s own consultation response.

The cynical would point to CIL working group chair Liz Peace’s former role as chief executive of, er, the BPF. However, that would disregard the strength and independence of the group as a whole on CIL issues:  Gilian Macinnes (PAS), Steve Dennington (Croydon Council), Tom Dobson (Quod), Andrew Whitaker (Home Builders Federation), John Fuller (leader, South Norfolk District Council) and Michael Gallimore (Hogan Lovells). When the real report comes out, it will be worth reading and let’s hope that the Government don’t mangle whatever its recommendations turn out to be.  

But I’m excited already. Wouldn’t be great if we could move to a two tier model:

– for most developments, no section 106 agreements at all, replaced by a combination of (1) CIL and (2) wider use of standardised conditions than planning obligations to secure contributions and site-specific infrastructure. Authorities run scared from using conditions to secure contributions and affordable housing, sometimes without reason (Planning Practice Guidance: “where the six tests will be met, it may be possible use a negatively worded condition to prohibit development authorised by the planning permission until a specified action has been taken (for example, the entering into of a planning obligation requiring the payment of a financial contribution towards the provision of supporting infrastructure“)

– for major complex developments (eg opportunity area sites in London, urban extensions and new settlements), no CIL, replaced by section 106 agreements documenting the most efficient mechanism for delivering necessary infrastructure in a timely way? Not to reduce the financial burden for developers but rather to make their money work harder and go further with efficient timely infrastructure delivery. No more problems over regulations 122 or 123, no more uncertainty as to whether infrastructure will come forward hand in hand with development. 

Section 106 agreements aren’t going away any time soon though: given their forthcoming role as delivery mechanism for starter homes, and with no sign any time yet of any standardised drafting from the Government to discourage the inevitable goldplating and gaming that will arise.  Shame that. 

I fell off the L is for Localism blog a few years ago. Starting over. 

Simon Ricketts 3.6.16

Personal views et cetera

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5 thoughts on “CIL BILL?”

  1. Very useful analysis. Whilst some strategic sites are carved out of CIL, it’s important to see what is happening to the rest. Often local authority infrastructure schedules confine CIL funds to paying for anything that a site specific planning obligation cannot cover. The result is that developments have to secure all of the planning obligations they would have needed to do previously and then pay CIL on top. That frustrates the intentions of CIL to improve certainty and speed of delivery of permissions by avoiding the need to negotiate a s106 obligation, but instead imposes additional costs on development.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Absolutely – many regulation 123 lists, the drafting of which is pretty much unregulated, seek to ensure that the LPA can have its cake and eat it, excluding any contributions that it can secure under section 106 agreements – sophistry that was never intended but the incentive for LPAs to maximise section 106 contributions on top of CIL was an obvious flaw in the system from the outset.

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  2. To date from my experience CIL has not been either popular or fully understood as a tax. For practical reasons S106 remains the way forward for most sites. I welcome the review and even a flat rate would be an improvement of a ‘wish list’ 123 schedule.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The Government is going to have to amend the CIL regs again come the Autumn, if they want Starter Homes to take function as is clearly intended, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they dealt with the Review Group’s recommendations at the same time.

    Liked by 1 person

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