There is increasing concern at the highest levels of the coalition that its own “localism” agenda has the potential to hamper economic growth in the coming months – just as the government is at its most vulnerable to any sign of downturn. Ministers at Eric Pickles’ communities department believe that many of their localist policies will help business to grow; but others suspect that the general theme – handing more power to communities – will instead empower “nimbies” who want to stop development.
Against this backdrop we revealed this morning that Vince Cable and George Osborne are drawing up plans for several planning changes which could be announced in the spring Budget. The proposals come as the new head of the CBI warned that the ”jury is still out” over whether Mr Pickles’ new planning system will “deliver”. Here are the ideas: Read more