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Neighbourhood Planning

Volume 560: debated on Monday 18 March 2013

Following Upper Eden’s resounding yes vote in the first neighbourhood planning referendum on 7 March, the Under-Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, my right hon. Friend the Member for Bath (Mr Foster), announced a £9.5 million support programme for the next two years. This will offer direct support and grants of up to £7,000 to help more communities follow in Eden’s footsteps.

Communities in Sandwich, Ramsgate, Broadstairs and Margate are keen to take up local neighbourhood planning. What would you say are the critical success factors, and what are you giving local authorities to support these communities develop exciting new planning?

Order. I am not giving local authorities anything for this purpose, but I have a feeling that the Minister will claim that he is.

Indeed we are. In 2013-14, we are offering local authorities £30,000 per neighbourhood plan to help communities defray the costs of achieving their plan. The most important success factor is to involve local people, consult them throughout the process, and then remind them that an adopted neighbourhood plan will bring 25% of future revenues from the community infrastructure levy, which can be spent by the community on its priority.