Wednesday, 13 July 2011
Localism Bill – Lords Committee stage
The House of Lords began to debate Part 5 of the Localism Bill yesterday (12 July), discussing Clauses 95 (Duty to co-operate in relation to planning of sustainable development), 96 (Local development schemes), 97 (Adoption and withdrawal of development plan documents) and 99 (Community Infrastructure Levy: approval of charging schedules).
I confess that I simply cannot work up any enthusiasm for the ‘duty to co-operate’. I remain deeply sceptical of its practical effect; it is certainly no substitute for strategic planning, and so tinkering with the wording is very unlikely to make it work any more effectively.
Various amendments to the four clauses mentioned above were moved, debated and then withdrawn. I am bound to say that this appeared to me to make this day’s proceedings on the Bill largely pointless. I am rather hoping that a more decisive debate may be held on those clauses which have caused really serious concern.
I may not have the time in the next couple of weeks to keep an eye on the debate on a day-to-day basis, so (subject to any brief comments that I might be able to make during the course of this week), further coverage of the Bill in this blog may have to wait until later in the month.
© MARTIN H GOODALL