The Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) is a charge that was introduced by the Planning Act 2008 and came into force on 6 April 2010. It can increase the cost of developing both residential and commercial property but the amount of levy payable will vary depending upon the nature of the development.
Below are some frequently asked questions on the levy.
The charging authorities are the district and unitary authorities, the London Boroughs, National Park authorities, Broads and the Mayor of London. To know whether a charging authority has brought a CIL charge into effect, you can check its website. There is no CIL charge unless a charging schedule is in place and under the regulations the authority’s CIL charging schedule needs to be on its website.
The sort of developments which are liable for CIL are new or extended buildings. Neither roads nor buildings into which people do not normally go or which they only go into intermittently for inspecting and maintaining fixed plant or machinery are not CIL liable.
The charge is on the basis of £ per square metre of new floor area created plus any indexing for inflation. The actual rate will vary from authority to authority. CIL can be set on a geographical or intended use basis. The Mayor of London’s CIL is set by geographical zone, for example, while Newark and Sherwood’s is a mixture of the two.
Yes, any existing floor space that will be demolished before completion of the development and is in lawful use when planning permission is granted will be taken into account in the calculation. Be careful, though, because to be or have been “in lawful use” means that part of the building being demolished must have been in use for a continuous period of at least six months within the period of 12 months ending on the day that planning permission is granted. If this criterion is not met, then there is no set off and the CIL liability will be higher than anticipated.
Yes. There are exemptions for minor developments where the gross area of new build is less than 100 square metres save where the development comprises one or more buildings; charitable exemption or relief; social housing relief; and a discretionary relief where it is applied.
The main procedural steps are:
It is very likely that it will be liable if it falls within the scope of CIL. If you intend to carry out development under the General Permitted Development Order, then you need to submit a notice of chargeable development to the local authority, unless the development is for under 100 sqm of new floor space and does not comprise one or more new dwellings.
You need to have clearly established whether CIL has been paid in full or, if not, have it made clear who is going to be responsible for paying it.
Quite possibly yes. Government Guidance issued in December 2012 stated that there should be no actual or perceived “double dipping” with developers paying twice for the same item of infrastructure. When an authority introduces CIL, it should set out a list of projects or types of infrastructure that it intends to fund through the levy. The authority’s s.106 requirements should be scaled back to matters which are directly related to a specific site and which are not on the CIL list. Where the list has a generic item such as “education” or “transport” then s.106 contributions should not normally be sought for specific projects which fall in that category unless they have been justified with reference to underpinning evidence at the point where the CIL schedule underwent initial examination.
It is worthwhile adding that social housing does not fall within the items that can be funded by CIL.