As the Scottish Planning Bill continues to make its way slowly through the Parliament, further concerns are being raised at the cost of the amendments proposed at Stage 2.
MSPs on the local government committee had made 230 amendments to the bill adding in extra powers and responsibilities for planning authorities.
A new Financial Memorandum on the Bill has also been published and it highlights a few key figures which would result from these proposals:
- Planning Authorities could see up-to an additional £75 million of costs for managing the system
- Businesses/development community could see more than £400 million in additional costs
Since the turn of the new year, many of us involved in advising clients and working within the planning system, as well as economists and professional bodies have voiced concerns at the nature of this Bill and how it has been transformed from its original purpose. From our considerable experience of working across numerous Planning Authorities in Scotland, Rapleys agree that this additional financial burden will do nothing to help the already stretched planning services. How this helps make Scotland a competitive and attractive location is also questionable.
There has to be a realisation that if Scotland makes the planning system too difficult and burdensome for those seeking to invest here then that capital can go elsewhere.
Rapleys Scottish Planning Team has been and continues to monitor progress of the passage of this bill in order to be able to fully advise on its potential ramifications on our existing and future clients, and we would be interested to get the views of others on this crucially important stage.