RTPI NW Environment Conference

Report by Richard Kevan, Partner, from the RTPI NW Environment conference which took place at Brockholes in Preston, within its iconic floating visitor centre.

Housing Infrastructure Fund

Tuesday 4th July saw the launch of the Housing Infrastructure Fund, a Government capital grant programme of up to £2.3 billion available from 2017/18 to 2020/21 by the Communities Secretary, Sajid Javid. The fund is part of the wider £23 billion National Productivity Investment Fund which was initially announced last year by Philip Hammond as part of the Autumn Statement 2016 and targets spending on areas critical to boosting productivity.

The Vision for Manchester

The terrorist attack at Manchester Arena on the evening of Monday 22nd May cast an immediate and vast shadow on the city. Indisputably, from that moment focus was on the victims of the attack, both for those directly involved as well as the wider community of Manchester. Nevertheless, the people of Manchester had been encouraged to go about their day-to-day business in an act of defiance against those that seek to destroy the freedom we value every day and the hope we engender for the future. This instruction came directly from Sir Richard Leese, the Leader of Manchester City Council.

Neighbourhood Planning Act 2017

In the midst of the chaos following the announcement of a snap General Election, due to take place on 8th June, the Neighbourhood Planning Bill, which was published in May 2016, received Royal Assent on Thursday 27th April. Given that Parliament has now been formally dissolved, it is good to see that planning remained a focus until the very end of the 2015-2017 term.

EIA Regulations 2017 Laid Before Parliament

The new Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Regulations were laid before Parliament yesterday following a period of consultation by the Department for Communities and Local Government. The new 2017 EIA Regulations transpose the European Directive (2014/52/EU) as amended. Member States are required to transpose the Directive into domestic legislation by 16th May 2017.

Spring Budget 2017

In his second budget, and the final Spring budget scheduled to be delivered, the Chancellor, Philip Hammond addressed the house and highlighted that growth had been revised upwards from 1.6% to 2.0% for 2017 and that the UK was now the fastest growing nation in the G7 group. In terms of other key points, borrowing is falling lower than forecast and, whilst the national debt has risen, it is still predicted to fall in 2017.