Councillor seeks views on planning agreements

A Berwick councillor has called for residents' views on how developer planning obligations can be improved.

Monday, 31st December 2018, 08:36 am
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Coun Georgina Hill, chairman of Northumberland County Council’s audit committee, told Berwick Town Council that the committee is planning work on how the obligations, known as Section 106 agreements, can be administered.

“If anyone has concerns about previous Section 106 agreements or suggestions about the future of them we would like to hear from them,” she said.

She felt it would be helpful if a dedicated Section 106 officer could be employed to negotiate agreements.

“Often it’s overworked planning officers doing them,” she said.

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“Sometimes they’re also worded in a way such as ‘on building the last house’ and then the developer never builds the last house.”

Section 106 agreements are private agreements made between local authorities and developers and can be attached to a planning permission to make acceptable development which would otherwise be unacceptable in planning terms. The land itself, rather than the person or organisation that develops the land, is bound by a Section 106 agreement, something any future owners will need to take into account.