Well, the Coalition have finally published the document lots of us have been waiting for – the “Decentralisation and the Localism Bill:an essential guide”.
A full copy can be found here.
Clearly, one thing of major concern to us is the impact proposed on the Planning Process and the introduction of a the ‘Right to Build’; the proposal to give local communities the ability to vote by a local referendum on development proposals rather than go through the planning process. Hhmmm.. “Right to Build” or “Right to Block”?
The Government have acknowledged that people are concerned that no-one is going to want new houses built on their doorstep but have said, in the above document, the following:
Nimbys will take over and stop all new development – This argument assumes that our highly centralised planning system is delivering the development we need. In fact, new homes are being built at the slowest rate since the war and investment in new infrastructure is falling behind. The only way forward is to embrace decentralised development that is not merely accepted, but actually led by local communities – because local people get to share in the benefits.
So that’s ok then – local communities won’t try to block any new development near where they live because they are all philanthropic and look towards the greater good of the community for years to come, realising that we need to build new houses for places for people to live in the future as the population continues to grow.
Afterall, how many times do local people rally round to raise spurious and vehement objections to development purely because they don’t want any building work being done near where they live?
The world has finally gone mad!
Still, on the upside – there are plans afoot to allow developers to ‘financially compensate’ those possibly effected by their proposals to ensure that they don’t object. I can see the sales of large brown paper bags going up….. Bribery anyone?