What is a community infrastructure levy (CIL)?

The community infrastructure levy (CIL) allows local authorities in England and Wales to raise funds from developers undertaking new building projects in their area to fund a wide range of infrastructure that is needed to support new development. It will replace Section 106 planning obligations for many forms of infrastructure, although Section 106 agreements will continue to be used for affordable housing provision and can still be used for site-specific mitigation measures.

CIL can be used to fund a wide variety of infrastructure including:

  • transport schemes;
  • flood defences;
  • schools, and community facilities; and,
  • parks, green spaces and leisure centres.

As almost all development has some impact on the need for infrastructure, services and amenities, this tariff-based approach is seen as an effective, quicker and fairer framework to fund new infrastructure to support growth.

CIL is applied as a charge on each square metre of floor space in new buildings, with a minimum threshold of 100 square metres or a single dwelling. Some types of development are exempt, for example social housing is eligible for 100% relief.

Rates of CIL will be set out in a document known as a 'charging schedule'. A charging schedule sets out a rate per square metre for all qualifying development.

The three councils, who together developed and adopted the Joint Core Strategy, or JCS, for their combined area have received their examiner's report and are now coming to the end of the process of introducing their CILs.

Adoption of the CIL by all three councils is planned for the Autumn 2018 but charging does not have to begin immediately as the councils can, on adoption, set a commencement date which is likely to be in late 2018 or early 2019.

It is important for applicants to follow the councils’ progress in bringing the CIL into force, as once a commencement date is set any application that is defined as chargeable and has not yet been granted planning permission will become liable, even if already submitted, validated or successful subject to Section 106 agreements.

For more information on visit the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) website.