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Friday, 31 October 2014

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South Lakes council backs levy charges

PLANS for a new levy that will raise funds for important local infrastructure projects have progressed.

South Lakeland District Council is proposing to introduce a Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) which will create a charge that is made on new developments and used to part fund infrastructure to support development and the related needs of local communities.

At a cabinet meeting today councillors approved the publication of the South Lakeland Community Infrastructure Levy Draft Charging schedule, which will lay out how much the council proposes to charge for different types of developments.

The publication stage is the opportunity for formal representations to be made on the CIL, which will be considered by an independent examiner later this year.

This follows public consultation on the Preliminary Draft Charging Schedule earlier this year.

CIL is charged on certain types of new developments involving a net increase in gross floor space over 100 square metres or on any new dwellings, even if they are less than this size. The landowner or developer are liable to pay the CIL.

The amount paid will be determined and notified when planning permission is granted and is payable when the development commences. It is proposed to levy CIL on residential developments and supermarkets and retail warehouses. Affordable housing and self-build housing are exempt from CIL.

Money raised from the CIL is to be used to help fund infrastructure that the council or local communities need to support the development of the area. The council must consult widely on the charging schedule and submit it for public examination by an independent examiner before adopting it.

Town and parish councils receive a minimum of 15 per cent of CIL receipts from development in their areas – which rises to 25 per cent where an adopted neighbourhood plan is in place.

Councillor Jonathan Brook, SLDC’s portfolio holder for Strategic Growth, said: “The main benefits of the Community Infrastructure Levy are that it means infrastructure is funded in line with growth so it can support development. It also enables developers to have a clear idea of how much they will be expected to contribute for each project.

“The council has put in place an ambitious Local Plan to meet the district’s housing and employment needs. The CIL is a key part of a plan for strategic growth that is accompanied by the necessary infrastructure.”

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