2. Legislative and Planning Policy Context

(2)2.1 Legislative Context

2.1.1 The legislative basis for planning obligations is set out in Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, as amended by later legislation including Section 12 of the 1991 Planning and Compensation Act and the Planning Act 2008.

2.1.2 CIL was introduced by the Planning Act 2008 and came into force through the CIL Regulations 2010 (as amended) on 6 April 2010. As of that date regulation 122 made it unlawful for a planning obligation to be taken into account when determining a planning application for development, or any part of a development, if the obligation does not meet all of the following tests:

  • It is necessary to make the development acceptable in planning terms;

  • It is directly related to the development; and,

  • It is fairly and reasonably related in scale and kind to the development.

2.1.3 The purpose of the tests are to distinguish the different roles that both CIL and planning obligations have when used together to support new development. The CIL Regulations also specify that upon the adoption of a CIL, or by 6th April 2015, whichever is the sooner, the use of planning obligations must be scaled back. This means that a planning obligation cannot be used to fund a project or type of infrastructure if there have been 5 separate obligations on or after 6 April 2010 which fund that project or type of infrastructure.

2.1.4 Cambridgeshire County Council as the Highways Authority may also use Section 278 of the Highways Act 1980 to secure private sector funding for works to the highway network where necessary to serve the proposed development, except where they are intended to be funded through the CIL.

(1)2.2 The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF)

2.2.1 Paragraphs 203 to 206 of the NPPF set out the Governments policy on planning obligations. These paragraphs reiterate the tests for planning obligations set out in the CIL Regulations; restate the principle that planning conditions are preferable to planning obligations; require local authorities to take into account changes in market conditions over time in policies and planning obligations and make sure they are sufficiently flexible to prevent planned development from being stalled.

(1)2.3 The Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL)

2.3.1 The CIL is a charge which local authorities can place on developers to help fund infrastructure needed to support new development in their areas. It will partially replace the existing Section 106 system. Unlike Section 106 Planning Obligations, CIL receipts are not earmarked for particular infrastructure. Instead, CIL monies are pooled into one fund which can be used for infrastructure, as set out in the Council’s Regulation 123 List1, needed to support new development across the City Council’s administrative area. Planning obligations may not be used to fund an item that is locally intended to be funded by CIL.

2.3.2 Following its introduction CIL receipts will be used to help fund, in whole or part, infrastructure needed to support or mitigate the impact of new development over an area, whereas Section 106 planning obligations will remain for on-site mitigation, including the provision of affordable housing. A separate Draft Affordable Housing SPD is being produced alongside this document.

2.3.3 The CIL and planning obligations need to be complementary contribution mechanisms. This SPD will clarify how the Council intends to implement each mechanism in partnership.

2.4 Cambridge Local Plan 2014 Submission Version

2.4.1 The proposed Cambridge Local Plan 2014 is due for submission to the Secretary of State for Examination in Public in March 2014. It is anticipated that the Draft Cambridge Local Plan will be adopted by the Council in early 2015. Proposals which require planning obligations should be considered in accordance with the Cambridge Local Plan 2014 (once adopted). This SPD will support and supplement the Local Plan, and so will be an important material consideration in the decision making process.

2.4.2 The Local Plan outlines that planning obligations are required to secure appropriate forms of development which meet the necessary on and off-site infrastructure requirements, whilst ensuring sustainable development. The overarching reasoning and justification for planning obligations is set out in the Vision for Cambridge to 2031 and the Local Plan Strategic Objectives as well as the following policies of the Local Plan:

  • Policy 1 – The presumption in favour of sustainable development

  • Policy 85 – Infrastructure Delivery, planning obligations and the Community Infrastructure Levy (Appendix 1)

2.4.3 Other policies within the Cambridge Local Plan 2014: Proposed Submission provide specific and detailed justification for various types of planning obligation e.g. Policy 68 – Open space and recreation provision through new development. Such policies are referred to in the relevant sections of this SPD.

(1)2.5 Cambridge CIL Charging Schedule – Submission Version

2.5.1 The Council consulted on its Draft CIL Charging Schedule between October 28th and December 9th 2013. The Council intends to submit its Draft CIL Charging Schedule for examination alongside the Draft Cambridge Local Plan 2014 in March 2014. It is anticipated that Cambridge City Council’s CIL will come into effect in April 2015.

2.5.2 Cambridge City Council is proposing to charge CIL in respect of new development at the following rates:

Use Charge £/sq.m
Residential (C3; C4 including sheltered accommodation)
Retail (A1 – A5 and sui generis uses akin to retail*)
Student Accommodation
All other development including B, C1, C2 and D class uses
* sui generis akin to retail includes petrol filling stations; shops selling and/or displaying motor vehicles; retail warehouse clubs.

2.5.3 Further information on the Council’s CIL is available on the Council’s website www.cambridge.gov.uk/community-infrastructure-levy. The Draft CIL Charging Schedule and Supporting Information should be read alongside this document.

1 The CIL Regulation 123 (R.123) list sets out the infrastructure that can be funded in whole or part by CIL. The Cambridge City Council Draft Regulation 123 List can be found at Appendix 2 for information.
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