Strategic Planning, Sustainability & Transportation Committee

7 November 2017

Urgent Update

Agenda Item 20 – Government Consultation: ‘Planning for the right homes in the right places‘

Amend the proposed consultation response in Appendix 1 with the addition of the following (underlined);


Q1 (re the standardised methodology): add to the response - The principle of capping the increase resulting from the new methodology is fully supported although setting this at 40% results in a very significant uplift in the housing requirements of authorities such as Maidstone. A much lower cap would be a more reasonable scale of change and would ease the transition to the new system.


Q6 (re transitional arrangements): Yes – it is essential that local authorities which have made stringent efforts to get an up to date Local Plan in place are able to implement that Plan, and the housing targets within it, without the risk of premature challenge from developers/landowners. This is vital to support a Plan-led system and to provide certainty for all those with an interest in the development process.  Changes to the NPPF and NPPG should underline that the new calculation should not apply until an up to date Local Plan is reviewed, to avoid premature challenge from the development industry.


Q19 (re improving delivery rates):  Proposals that act on the planning system should be matched with meaningful sanctions (possibly financial) on landowners/developers who fail to develop sites with planning permission promptly. This should avoid an onerous, administrative process for the local planning authority. Whilst Maidstone has a very good record consents being delivered – just 2% of consents expire without being implemented –  it is considered that more could be done by the development industry to accelerate the rate at which new homes are delivered. The Government could helpfully take action to reduce land banking and to inhibit the slow release of phases of housebuilding as a device to keep prices high(er).