Councillor Alan Sitkin (Cabinet Member for Economic Development) introduced the report of the Director of Regeneration and Environment (No.51) summarising the work undertaken to date towards the introduction of a Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) for Enfield.
1. The work undertaken towards the development and introduction of a Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) for Enfield, as detailed in section 3 of the report.
2. The CIL introduced a tariff based approach towards the raising of funds for new infrastructure developments and once adopted would largely replace contributions from Section 106 Agreements for this purpose associated with specific planning consents.
3. The CIL tarriff rates recommended for inclusion within the Draft Charging Schedule, as detailed in section 4 of the report. The proposed rates had been subject to consultation as part of a Preliminary Draft Charging Schedule and also subject to a detailed viability assessment which had been used to inform the levy rates in the Draft Charging Schedule. Details of the consultation response had been set out in Appendix 2 of the report. The proposed rates would be in addition to the Mayoral CIL and had been set at different levels for development depending on location across the borough. The different rates had been designed to reflect the variation in land values and development viability across the borough.
4. The concern expressed by Councillor Orhan at the lack of provision within the legislation establishing the CIL to set a levy for commercial uses such as hot food takeways and betting shops in sensitive locations across the borough. The planning powers available to control such uses were noted, as detailed in sections 4.5 – 4.11 of the report, but it was felt that the Government needed to take urgent action to remove this restriction in relation to the CIL Regulations.
5. The following comments highlighted by Councillor Hurer, on behalf of the Opposition Group, who had requested to speak on this item at the meeting:
a. whilst supportive of the approach towards introducing a variable CIL tariff applying to different areas of the borough, concerns were raised at the level at which the base rate had been set and difference between the levels being recommended in each area;
b. the need identified for any further consultation undertaken to include details on the recommended charging rates;
c. the request for details to be provided on the viability assessment referred to within section 3.7 and Appendix 4 of the report along with a comparison of the CIL charging schedules in other boroughs accompanied, where possible, with details of the average house prices in each area. In response Paul Walker (Assistant Director Regeneration, Planning and Programme Management) advised that he would be able to provide an Executive Summary and comparison of the CIL charging schedules.
6. The lobbying activity already undertaken by the Council, as highlighted by Councillor Bond, in support of the recommendations arising from the Portas Review, relating to the creation of a separate retail use class for betting shops.
7. Subject to approval by Cabinet and Council, the Draft CIL Charging Schedule would be open to a further period of consultation prior to independent examination and formal adoption in Spring 2015.
Alternative Options Considered:
1. The intention to prepare a CIL Charging Schedule is set out in the Council’s Local Development Scheme and adopted Core Strategy. To solely continue with section 106 Agreements as the main source of developer contribution after the imposition of section 106 pooling restrictions, in April 2015, would significantly reduce the revenues that ccould be raised to help deliver the growth and regeneration objectives proposed in the Borough, as contained within the Local Plan
2 Delaying publication of the Draft Charging Schedule. Further delay would mean that Section 106 pooling restrictions would have a significant impact on Section 106 revenue. It would also mean that the base evidence contained in the viability study to support a CIL charge would become dated and would need to be revised to support the examination of the Charging Schedule.
DECISION: Cabinet agreed
1. The Enfield Community Infrastructure Levy Draft Charging Schedule for recommendation on to Council and, subject to approval, thereafter a six week consultation and submission to the Secretary of State for public examination. A copy of the Schedule was attached as Annex 1 to the report.
2. The Cabinet Member for Economic Development be authorised to agree the publication of the CIL Supporting Information Document to provide further guidance to applicants for planning permission on the justification and operation of Enfield’s CIL.
3. To note the publication of the revised Infrastructure Delivery Plan (2014) following consultation.
4. The Director of Regeneration and Environment, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Economic Development, agree appropriate changes to the Draft Charging Schedule and undertake any further consultation required, in the run up to and during the public examination process into the document, in response to representations received, requests form the Planning Inspector and any emerging evidence, guidance or legal advice with changes of a substantive nature being considered, where necessary, by the Local Plan Cabinet Sub-Committee.
RECOMMENDED TO COUNCIL to approve the Enfield Community Infrastructure Levy Draft Charging Schedule, for consultation and submission to the Secretary of State for public examination.
Reason: Significant investment in infrastructure is needed to support the regeneration and growth planned in the Council’s Local Plan (Core Strategy). With the introduction of restrictions on the pooling of contributions collected via Section 106 agreements in April 2015, CIL will become the main source of securing developer contributions for significant infrastructure improvements. Publication of the Draft Charging Schedule is crucial to advancing CIL and maintaining developer contributions. The proposed CIL rates have been developed with appropriate regard to planning policy and the need to ensure the continued viability of development in the borough. (Key decision – reference number 3844)