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Simplifying planning policy

04/02/2010

The Scottish Government today launched a document which sets out planning policy on topics such as housing, wind farms, flooding and the natural and built environment.

It replaces 17 separate policies with one single document which is easier for communities and developers to understand and interpret.

Also published today is a circular updating guidance on the criteria and processes when developers are required to make a contribution to the provision of local infrastructure, where a development would create additional infrastructure demands.

Infrastructure Minister Stewart Stevenson said:

"The Scottish Government has listened to voices calling for a more effective and efficient planning system. We have acted by introducing a package of measures to provide applicants, communities and the development industry with greater certainty and speed of decision making.

"By consolidating planning policies into one, single document, we are providing a shorter, clearer and more focused statement of national planning policy. And our new circular spells out the importance of speeding up the planning agreements process, enabling swifter issuing of planning permission.

"Our Economic Recovery Plan ensures all Government activity, including on planning and regulation, supports economic development. Having the right planning advice and information in one place builds on our work to ensure planning is an aid, not a barrier, to economic development."

Phil Miller, Chairman of the Scottish Property Federation, said:

"The Scottish Property Federation welcomes the revision of the circular on planning agreements, and supports the emphasis on reasonable and proportionate contributions. It is vital in the current fiscal environment that both the private sector and local authorities support the Scottish Government's clear intention that planning agreements should be realistic and guided by development economics and viability.

"We also welcome the publication of the consolidated Scottish Planning Policy (SPP), with its emphasis on facilitating and encouraging appropriate development. Implementing the SPP will require political leaders, planning officials and the private sector to redouble their efforts to build strong working relationships to deliver the quality planning system that Scotland deserves."