13 May 2020

CIL Changes ‘Welcome Relief’ Now Time to Extend Planning Permissions

The National Federation of Builders (NFB) has welcomed the Government’s announcement that it will amend the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) Regulations to give much needed relief to small and medium sized housebuilders.

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government has said it is changing the regulations to encourage local authorities, who are responsible for CIL levy collection, to defer defer payments, temporarily disapply late payment interest and to provide discretion to return interest already charged since the beginning of the lockdown period for SMEs with a turnover of less than £45m per year.

 

Welcoming the changes, Chief Executive of the National Federation of Builders, Richard Beresford, said:

 

“At the beginning of April we called on the Government to take six steps to help the sector, including suspending CIL collection, so the announcement that the levy will be deferred, late payments disapplied and interest returned will come as welcome relief to the housebuilders we represent. The industry continues to face a cash-flow crisis so this change will help businesses to keep going”.

 

However, the NFB is warning that Government needs to avoid adding additional administrative burden on housebuilders. Calling for an extension to planning permissions, Head of Policy at the National Federation of Builders, James M. Butcher, added:

 

“The COVID19 crisis has significantly delayed works taking place and works starting on site. Although housebuilders are now being encouraged to go back to work, it is inevitable that delays will continue as we adjust to new ways of safe working and permissions are at risk of lapsing. This will cause an unnecessary delay as developers have to reapply for planning permission, impacting our recovery. The Government should act to extend all planning permissions by a year, to remove unnecessary additional bureaucracy.”