Ahead of the changes to the rules regarding the relaxation of Section 106 Planning obligations (discussed in the last post below), the Government is appointing ‘expert brokers’ with immediate effect to begin working with Councils who are keen to remove obstacles preventing development in their area. The ‘expert brokers’ will offer technical expertise to unlock negotiations with developers on S.106 obligations etc. where sites have stalled and act as go-betweens in disputes.
The first wave of councils to benefit from this includes Leeds City Council and Kirklees Council in Yorkshire. The others are Ipswich, Corby, Swindon, Ashford, Gloucester, Carlisle, Northumberland and Durham. The ‘expert brokers’ will then go on to work with other councils around the country.
Further details can be viewed here http://www.communities.gov.uk/news/newsroom/2197690
The Government sees the expert broker move as a way of kick starting developments, resulting in those developments providing affordable housing and wider benefits. Many are not so sure. See, for example, http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/government-uturn-will-deny-council-housing-to-millions-8061635.html