The Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) has urged the HM Treasury ahead of the Autumn Budget to allow local authorities in England to raise planning fees to cover the entire costs of the planning application function
In its Budget representation to the Chancellor Philip Hammond, the RTPI said planning fees, even with a recent increase of 20%, covers only 40% of the overall running cost of development control services.
The RTPI say the creation of local plans and a proactive fuction adhered to by the government, is vital step to addressing the housing crisis and is “entirely dependent on central council funding and has to compete with headline urgent needs in social care”.
Richard Blyth, RTPI Head of Policy and Research, said:
“Our work with local planning authorities has alerted us to the severe shortage of local planning authority staff. The budgetary pressures in many areas are so acute that resources are only enough to cover the basic statutory functions despite the pressing need for innovative local solutions to housing.”
By asking those who submit planning applications to cover all of the administrative costs of the projects they are working on, councils could prioritise these funds to better support social care, housing and other frontline services.
The RTPI also ask for any planning fee increases to continue to be ring-fenced for planning purposes.
The Royal Town Planning Institute is the UK’s leading planning body for spatial, sustainable and inclusive planning and is the largest planning institute in Europe with over 25,000 members.
The RTPI is a membership organisation and a Chartered Institute responsible for maintaining professional standards and accrediting world class planning courses nationally and internationally.
The RTPI campaigning activity covers a wide range of issues, which helps to raise the profile of the planning profession and to build sustainable communities throughout the UK.