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The Scottish Government has published three new planning consultation documents:
- National Planning Framework 3 - Main Issues Report
- Draft Scottish Planning Policy
- Environmental Report covering both documents
National Planning Framework 3 (NPF3)
The National Planning Framework (NPF) provides a framework for the spatial development of Scotland. NPF3 will set out the Government's development priorities over the next 20-30 years. Like its two predecessors, it will be the spatial expression of the Government Economic Strategy, informed by the Government's plans and policies in areas such as transport, energy, health and wellbeing, climate change, and land use.
As you will be aware from our previous planning alerts, The Town and Country Planning (Fees for Applications and Deemed Applications) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2013 came into force on 6th April 2013, increasing planning application fees by approximately 20%.
The Scottish Government has published a new Planning Circular 2/2013 (Town and Country Planning (Fees for Applications and Deemed Applications) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2013) in relation to this change, amending Circular 1/2004 and revoking Circular 2/2007.
Is your planning permission about to expire? Don't get caught out!
Section 58 of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997 became effective on 3rd August 2009 reducing the standard duration of planning permission from 5 to 3 years. We are aware that the change has been overlooked in some cases where it has been assumed that planning permissions continue to be valid for 5 years. It is likely that if no period is specified in the Decision Notice or Information Notes the default is likely to be 3 years from the date of the Notice. Variations of planning permission may also be affected by this. You should check expiry dates to ensure you do not get caught out by the changes.
If you require any advice then please contact Lee Murphy.
In March last year the Scottish Government published "Planning Reform: Next Steps" which set out a programme of action to consolidate and intensify planning modernisation. A series of consultations then followed, the responses to which were analysed and published in September. This latest publication details the Scottish Government's response to the points raised in each consultation paper. Here is a summary of the main points, taking each consultation in turn....
Development Plan Examinations Consultation
In response to users' concerns about their experience of the revised development plan examination process, this consultation sought views on potential refinements and the binding nature of reporter's recommendations. The general view was that the ability of stakeholders to fully participate in the process is being limited and confidence in the system is being lost. The Scottish Government will refine the examination process to allow examinations to be completed and plans adopted in a timely manner. Reporters will continue to complete the examination into all issues raised and propose modifications to the plan where appropriate and achievable within a reasonable time frame. A revised guidance note for reporters and an update to Circular 1/2009 will be published by March 2013.
New planning Circular 3/2012: planning obligations and good neighbour agreements replaces and revokes Circular 1/2010 and the Annex to Circular 1/2010 and incorporates the advice in the Chief Planner's letter of 4th November 2011 regarding occupancy restrictions.
In determining whether planning obligations are appropriate, planning authorities should take decisions based on the relevant development plan, the proposed development and the tests set out in the circular. Where a planning obligation is considered essential, it must have a relevant planning purpose and be related and proportionate in scale and kind to the proposed development.
Our blog at the end of March highlighted the current Scottish Government consultations, due to close on 22 June 2012.
One of the five consultation papers proposes an increase in the maximum planning application fee to £100,000. The amount and details vary depending on the type of development. New fees are proposed for renewal of planning permission although the Government states the changes in fees for business and commercial developments are designed to encourage expansion of SMEs.