We are in the early stages of the consideration of the Levelling Up and Regeneration (LUR) Bill. There is of course a journey ahead before what has been announced becomes law, and the detail of what will apply remains uncertain.
The Government has said that it expects that changes to planning procedures will begin to take place from 2024 - once the Bill has Royal Assent, and the associated regulations and changes to national policy are in place.
The Bill is a long one - it contains 196 provisions and 17 schedules (which set out the more detailed changes). There is a 248-page ‘Explanatory Notes’ document. Currently, it is subject to scrutiny in the Committee stages in the House of Commons, so it is yet to go back to the chamber of the Commons (Third Reading of the Bill) and go through the House of Lords.
The stated aims of the Bill include the following:
- The simplification of local plans ensuring they are transparent and easier to engage with.
- The consideration of new models for a new infrastructure levy.
- A number of policies and powers to enable planning to better support town centre regeneration.
- Improving democracy and engagement in planning decisions.
- Supporting environmental protection through planning.
Therefore, in this month’s article on Planning, we will have brief fly through the principal changes as they apply to Planning.
The Planning White Paper
Before the LUR Bill was introduced, the Government had published and then consulted on the Planning White Paper in August 2020.