Sustainable Communities

June 28th, 2012 by James Goudie KC

The Sustainable Communities Regulations 2012, SI 2012/1523, come into force on 26 July 2012, in England only.  They are the first Regulations to be made under the Sustainable Communities Act 2007, as amended in 2010.  The 2007 Act provides a channel whereby local people can ask Central Government, via their local authority, to take action which they consider will help improve the economic, social or environmental well-being of their area.  The Act provides for the SoS to invite local authorities to consult locally and to make proposals for enhancing local sustainability and well-being.  The main elements of the Regulations are that: (1) local authorities must, before making a proposal, to consult and try to reach agreement about the proposal with representatives of interested local persons, and have regard to guidance issued by the SoS; (2) the SoS must consider each proposal, and publish the decision, giving reasons, and the action to be taken if the proposal is to be implemented; (3) a “Selector” will be appointed who will consider the resubmission of proposals from local authorities whose proposals have been rejected by the SoS: the Selector must decide whether to submit them to the SoS for reconsideration, giving reasons, and must appoint an Advisory Panel to assist it in deciding whether these proposals should be submitted for reconsideration; and (4) the SoS must publish proposals submitted by the Selector with its reasons, and and must then consult and try to reach agreement with the Selector, before publishing the subsequent decision and giving reasons, and specifying the action to be taken if the proposal is to be implemented.


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