Media Briefing Note: Localism Bill Receives Royal Assent

LONDON, 15 November 2011 - The Localism Bill received Royal Assent today, Tuesday 15 November, thus making it the Localism Act 2011.

Michael Gallimore, Head of Planning at Hogan Lovells, commented:

"The Localism Act seeks to put planning firmly in the hands of local people and local communities.  The burning question is whether they will be sufficiently motivated by financial and other incentives to adopt a pro development stance.  In those areas where there has historically been pressure to resist development, little may change.  In areas where communities can see the benefits which development can bring in terms of housing, jobs and economic growth, however, there will hopefully be a more constructive approach.

Businesses and developers will want to explore the opportunities to engage with communities as neighbourhood plans come forward and to work with them to formulate a vision which is deliverable and viable.

Meanwhile, other provisions in the Act offer a range of opportunities and threats.  The new rules on predetermination open up opportunities for greater Member involvement in the planning application process, whilst the statutory duty to consult and the list of assets of community value will open up a new range of legal considerations.

What seems certain is that, with the anticipated publication of the National Planning Policy Framework next year, planning will remain in the public eye for the foreseeable future."


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