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Growth and Infrastructure Bill 2012-13

Royal Assent

(This Bill is from a previous session)

Summary

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Summary

The Growth and Infrastructure Bill was announced by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Eric Pickles, and published on 18 October 2012. The majority of provisions apply to England and Wales only.

It aims to remove red-tape from business investment, housing regeneration and job creation through a series of practical reforms.

The Bill will allow for:

  • The creation of thousands of new jobs through further investment across a range of technologies, including £160million in new gas infrastructures.
  • The unlocking of housing sites that have been stalled by the planning application process and the granting of planning permission on many existing properties waiting to expand. Currently, there are 75,000 homes in the UK that have had their planning permission stalled.
  • The prevention of a rise in business rates for the next five years, ensuring tax stability.
  • The introduction of an optional 'employee-owner' status for companies to create more jobs by giving employees a stake in the firm in exchange for some of their employment rights.

The speeding up of planning processes for large scale infrastructure and commercial projects. Fast-track decision making will now mean the planning process for such projects from start to finish will take no longer than a year.

Some organisations have not welcomed the Government's reforms, with the Campaign to Protect Rural England criticising proposals to remove planning decision making from local authorities.  However, the Local Government Association support the plans, describing the prevention of an increase in business rates over a five-year period as a "significant step in the right direction".