New Act will help house builders, cut red tape and create economic growth

Reforms to reduce red tape and other barriers which hinder the creation of economic growth and local jobs have become law.

The Growth and Infrastructure Bill has received Royal Assent. The new Act will enact measures to reduce ‘confusing and overlapping red tape that delays and discourages business investment, housing development, new infrastructure and job creation,’ according to the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG).

The main elements of the Act and associated measures include:

  • Allowing the renegotiation of section 106 agreements if they are rendering the site unviable for the house builder. The DCLG says this could kick-start 75,000 stalled homes.
  • Introducing a simpler planning system focused on sustainable growth
  • Reducing the extra paperwork that accompanies a planning application
  • Allowing the house builder or developer to take their planning application to the Planning Inspectorate if a local authority has repeatedly failed to meet statutory requirements to consider applications on time.

In addition, 15,000 affordable homes will be delivered from new capital funding and the infrastructure guarantee.

A simpler planning system is intended to reduce the volume of extra paperwork required with a planning application. It should also remove overlapping development consent regimes that require multiple extra permissions from different government agencies.

Planning minister Nick Boles said: “These new laws will reform our economy so it can boost investment, growth and jobs by streamlining a lot of confusing and overlapping red tape that all too often gets in the way of people’s everyday lives.”

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