Planning Act Blog 197: Localism Bill Published Today

This is entry number 197, first published on 13 December 2010, of a blog on the implementation of the Planning Act 2008. Click here for a link to the whole blog. If you would like to be notified when the blog is updated, with links sent by email, click here.

Today's entry reports on the publication of the Localism Bill.

The long-awaited Localism Bill is finally revealed today. After at least two false starts, the Bill appears on today's Parliamentary Order of Business as having its first reading today. Analysis of the Bill as it affects infrastructure planning will follow tomorrow.


Links to the Bill Volume 1 (clauses); Volume 2 (Schedules) Written ministerial statement by Eric Pickles on the Localism Bill Department for Ccommunities and Local Government (CLG) publish essential guide to decentralisation and the Localism Bill CLG publish press release on Localism Bill (use of the past tense somewhat premature) CLG publish fairly detailed background note to Bill Here is the 'long title' of the Bill. Normally given as a continuous sentence, I have formatted it for easier reading:

The Bill will be accompanied by other documents, but it is on its own at the moment. The main one is 'explanatory notes', which explain the purpose and effect each clause of the Bill in non-technical language. Other documents are a 'delegated powers memorandum', which sets out the powers contained in the Bill that allow the government to legislate by order, and an 'impact assessment', which sets out the financial and environmental costs and benefits of the Bill.

There was some debate as to whether the provisions of the Bill abolishing regional strategies would require, or at least undergo, Strategic Environmental Assessment, where their environmental effects are assessed and published in an 'environmental report', so it will be interesting to see whether one is published either separately or as part of the impact assessment.

Contents of Bill

The Bill will be analysed in tomorrow's blog entry, but here are the contents of the background note mentioned above:

right to veto excessive council tax rises community right to challenge [council service provision] community right to buy [council assets] local referendums general power of competence local authority governance [return to committee system option] directly elected mayors predetermination [rules relaxed for councillors] standards board [abolished] pay accountability [of senior officers] scrapping bin taxes...

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