Proposed Planning System Reforms: Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill

16 May 2022

In the Queen’s Speech on Wednesday 11 May 2022 the government set out a series of proposed reforms to the planning system through the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill. These have been informed by the responses to the government’s 2020 White Paper – Planning for the Future.

The main planning proposals of interest to clerks are:

  • The process for preparing local plans will be simplified and made quicker
  • More planning policies will be set nationally
  • Rules about notifying parish councils about planning applications affecting their area will be strengthened – they should be notified of all planning applications not just those submitted to the local planning authority
  • A locally-set, mandatory non-negotiable levy will replace s106 planning obligations and the Community Infrastructure Levy. The neighbourhood share (15%, rising to 25% if the area is covered by a Neighbourhood Plan) of the new levy will be retained
  • Some aspects of neighbourhood planning will be amended and strengthened
  • A new neighbourhood planning tool will provide a simpler alternative to neighbourhood plans
  • A ‘street votes’ system will be introduced that would permit residents to propose development on their street and hold a vote on whether it should be given planning permission
  • Local and neighbourhood plans will be given more weight when making decisions on applications, so that there must be strong reasons to override them
  • Local authorities will have the discretion to introduce a council tax premium on second homes

There will be a more detailed briefing in the July 2022 edition of The Clerk magazine.

Note: while most of the Bill applies to the whole of the UK, some provisions apply to England only.

Links to further information can be found here:

General Sector NewsGovernment Announcements/LegislationPlanning