The Scottish Government have now issued a Position Statement following the last round of consultations on review of the Scottish Planning system which closed in April 2017. This statement describes the key changes that Scottish Ministers are now considering taking forward through the forthcoming Planning Bill. Further responses on this Position Statement can be lodged up until 11th August 2017.
Some of the key proposals for the Planning Bill include:
- The ability for communities to product Local Place Plans for incorporation in to the Local Development Plan
- Introduction of a statutory link between development planning and community planning
- Overhaul of the Local Development Plan process – the Main Issues Report stage will be replaced by early engagement and a ‘gate check’ followed by formal consultation on the draft Plan. LDPs will have a 10 year timescale with the opportunity for updates between full review cycles
- Requirement for enhanced public engagement on planning applications for sites that are not allocated in the Local Development Plan and more proportionate pre-application consultation for allocated sites
- Measures to strenghten enforcement against breaches of planning control
- Mandatory training for Councillors serving on Planning Committes or Local Review Bodies
- Proposals for nationally set housing land supply targets appear to have been rejected
- Developers to include information on viability of sites and development delivery as part of the development plan process
Local authority planners, councillors as well as community councils and residents input greatly to the various consultation processes previously and it is good to see some of the issues raised being included in this Position Statement. The Statement can be accessed here along with the link for further comment on any of the proposals.