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  6. Localism Bill on track for committee stage

Localism Bill on track for committee stage

The Government’s Localism Bill, which includes major reform of the planning system, has received its second reading in the Commons.

The legislation will now be scrutinised by a committee of MPs starting on 25 January. It includes plans to reform the Infrastructure Planning Commission, abolish regional spatial strategies and introduce neighbourhood plans and the New Homes Bonus arrangements.

In the Commons, Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said: “The Bill will reverse the centralist creep of decades and replace it with local control. It is a triumph for democracy over bureaucracy. It will fundamentally shake up the balance of power in this country, revitalising local democracy and putting power back where it belongs, in the hands of the people.”

Kate Henderson, Chief Executive of the Town and Country Planning Association said: "Localism is an opportunity to be grasped. The drive towards community based planning is a long standing TCPA objective and we welcome the determination to reconnect the system to the people it serves.

“We must seek to shape a planning system which is responsive to people's needs and aspirations and promotes sustainable development."

Download ‘A plain English guide to the Localism Bill’

For the full record of the bill’s Second Reading debate go to Commons Hansard (17 January 2011, column 558)


Roger Milne

21 January 2011