Planning Obligations

June 6th, 2018 by James Goudie KC

In Good Energy Generation Ltd v SoS for CLG and Cornwall Council (2018) EWHC 1270 (Admin) concerns the Council’s refusal to grant planning permission for a wind farm development. The refusal was upheld by the SoS and the Inspector.  Lang J declined to quash that decision.  The case is concerned with planning obligations and Regulation 122 of the Community Infrastructure Regulations 2010, which provides a statutory limitation on the use of planning obligations.  The developer submitted that in assessing the planning balance it was an error of law to disregard the benefits offered by the developer in a unilateral undertaking made under Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990.  The benefits offered included a community investment scheme open to local residents and a reduced electricity tariff open to local residents.

Lang J said, at paragraph 71, that the tests in Regulation 122 are “more stringent” than the general test as to the materiality of a planning obligation, and “go wider” than the previous law. The question of what is “necessary” is now a test in law, which it was not beforehand. She held that the Regulation 122 Tests were not satisfied.

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