William Eichler 13 September 2018

Councils should benefit from land value ‘uplift’, MPs say

Councils should benefit from land value ‘uplift’, MPs say  image

Increases in land value that result from public policy decisions should be shared with local communities and should not just go into the pockets of private developers, MPs say.

Government statistics show that agricultural land, which is granted planning permission for residential use, would, on average, increase in value from £21,000 per hectare to £1.95m per hectare.

A report from the Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee has concluded that councils and central Government should be able to capture a ‘significant proportion’ of this uplift in value to invest in new infrastructure and public services.

It recommends reform of the Land Compensation Act 1961 to give local authorities the power to purchase land at a fairer price and simplification of the compulsory purchase order process to make it faster and cheaper.

The committee also recommended reform of the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) to remove complexity and the extensive range of exemptions that currently limit its effectiveness.

More resources should be made available for local authorities, the MPs concluded, to ensure they are able to negotiate robustly with developers to secure the appropriate level of planning obligations.

‘Land value capture is fundamentally about fairness and necessity,’ said committee chair Clive Betts MP.

‘Fairness, because the current system allows landowners, through no effort of their own, to make multi-million pound profits from the substantial increases in land value that arise from public policy decisions, such as the granting of planning permission.

‘As these increases are significantly created by the actions of the state, it is right that a significant proportion of this should be shared with the local community.

‘Necessity, because if the Government is to meet the challenge of providing enough new homes over the coming years, then they will also need to find the funds for improving the surrounding infrastructure.

‘Our proposed package of reforms to taxes and charges will ensure a fair proportion of the increase in value arising from public policy decisions can be used by national and local government to invest in new infrastructure and public services.’

The Local Government Association’s housing spokesman, Cllr Martin Tett welcomed the committee’s recommendations.

‘We have long–called for reforms to land compensation and compulsory purchase laws and are pleased that the committee has called for the Government to implement several of our recommendations.

‘Rising land prices is one of the most influential contributors to our housing crisis — it means less homes are built, they are less affordable, they are built more slowly, there can be compromises on quality, and there is not enough funding left over for vital local infrastructure and services that communities need to back development.

‘There are therefore huge gains for communities, economies and public services in allowing councils being able to capture potentially billions of pounds worth of land value increases to invest in the very infrastructure and services that generate those increasing values.’

Declaring a climate change emergency image

Declaring a climate change emergency

Local authorities can play a key role in tackling climate change – and there is plenty for them to do. Never before has thinking globally and acting locally been more important, says Mark Whitehead.
Open letter to Boris Johnson image

Open letter to Boris Johnson

The MJ's editor Heather Jameson asks the new PM a simple question: do you want to fund local government or do you want to scale back services to the basics?
Highways jobs

Solicitor/Barrister Advocate - Children’s x4

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
Band I, SCP 44 - 47 (£46,564 - £49,538 per annum) (£24.14 - 25.68 per hour)
To act as the principal advocate for all aspects of advocacy legal work relating to the children’s social care in the county court and high court. Sandwell Council House, Freeth Street, Oldbury B69 3DE
Recuriter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Business Support Officer

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
Band C, SCP 5 - 8 (£18,795 - £19,945 per annum) pro rata (£9.74 - £10.34 per hour)
The successful candidate will provide administrative business support to service teams within Adult Social Care, Health and Wellbeing. The Lyng, Health & Social Care Centre, Frank Fisher Way, West Bromwich, B70 7AW
Recuriter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Legal Case Worker– Social Care

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
Band E, SCP 18 - 25 (£24,313 - £28,785 per annum) (£12.60 - £14.92 per hour)
To facilitate the effective functioning of Legal Services, with responsibility for the co-ordination, preparing and monitoring of all case files. Sandwell Council House, Freeth Street, Oldbury B69 3DE
Recuriter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Customer Service Manager

Camden London Borough Council
Competitive
We’re looking for an innovative and people focussed Customer Service Manager Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Leisure Centre Receptionist

Brent Council
£21,591.00 - £22,377.00 p.a. (pro rata)
To work as a member of a team to provide high quality services which ensures the highest standard of customer care Brentford (City/Town), London (Greater)
Recuriter: Brent Council

Local Government News

Latest issue - Local Goverrnemnt News

The June issue of Local Government News contains the full details of all the winning schemes in the 2019 Street Design Awards. From Children's Play to Pedestrian Environment, find out who has been recognised for their innovation and use of best practice.

This issue also explores how local government pension funds can hedge currency risk, how councils can best address the shortfall in school places, and an update on the number of authorities banning the use of Roundup over safety fears.

Register for your free magazine