The government has promised, in its White Paper on Local Growth, a new “streamlined planning system”

The Local Growth paper in debate

The government has promised, in its White Paper on Local Growth, a new “streamlined planning system” along with 24 local enterprise partnerships (LEPs) and a £1.4bn Regional Growth Fund.

Speaking on behalf of the Department of Business Innovation and Skills, Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “I was delighted that so many of the proposals for local enterprise partnerships showed real imagination and initiative and a genuine desire to drive local economic growth. I am pleased to announce that we are asking 24 of these partnerships to set up their boards and get to work.”

Liz Peace, chief executive of the British Property Federation, said: “It’s extremely positive to see ministers giving thought to a more substantial re-localisation of business rates, something that would free councils from government grants and give them a real financial reward for approving development that generates economic activity and creates new jobs.”

Nigel Cussen, a partner in the Leeds office of planning consultancy DPP, comments: “LEPs will not have a planning focus, more of an economic development one. The main problem we can see with them is that the strategic focus will be lost; there is no wider, regional overview – something the RDAs were good at providing.”

Domenic Donatantonio of Planning Blog commented: “What is clear is that the government is not afraid to radically turn the planning system. In an era of budget cuts we await to see how authorities will bear the brunt of this ideological change.”

The Regeneration & Renewal Blog has created a map showing all the 24 local enterprise partnerships that can be viewed here.

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