Growth and Infrastructure Bill

The LGA believes the Growth and Infrastructure Bill presents an ideal opportunity to empower local areas to drive economic growth. However, the bill as published misses that opportunity and will fail to deliver the growth we need. To deliver a real impact, the legislation should focus on initiatives that can tackle the actual barriers to growth, of which planning is not one. The Bill's focus on planning is misguided and will not tackle the real barriers to growth, since councils are overwhelmingly saying ‘yes' to growth through the planning system. For example, approval for residential / commercial applications are at a record 10-year high

The Bill is also centralising in nature and in its current form represents a blow to local democracy. In addition, it is counterproductive given that removal of local accountability and large increases in decision making by the national unelected Planning Inspectorate will seriously dent trust at the local level, meaning some communities may be increasingly reluctant to accept new development in their areas.

11 March 2013

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