Regulation 122 (2A) of the Community Infrastructure Levey (CIL) Regulations 2010 (as amended) permit local authorities to charge a fee for monitoring and reporting on planning obligations. The Regulation 122 tests do not apply in relation to a planning obligation which requires a sum to be paid to a local planning authority in respect of the cost of monitoring (including reporting) provided:
The Planning Practice Guidance currently states the following in relation to charging planning obligation monitoring fees:
Authorities can charge a monitoring fee through section 106 planning obligations, to cover the cost of monitoring and reporting on delivery of that section 106 obligation. Monitoring fees can be used to monitor and report on any type of planning obligation, for the lifetime of that obligation. Monitoring fees should not be sought retrospectively for historic agreements.
Fees could be a fixed percentage of the total value of the section 106 agreement or individual obligation; or could be a fixed monetary amount per agreement obligation (for example, for in-kind contributions). Authorities may decide to set fees using other methods. However, in all cases, monitoring fees must be proportionate and reasonable and reflect the actual cost of monitoring. Authorities could consider setting a cap to ensure that any fees are not excessive.
From 1 January 2023 East Suffolk Council will charge a monitoring fee of £445 per obligation trigger towards administration costs. The fee is based upon the occurrence of triggers for compliance of a planning obligation rather than each obligation individually. The monitoring fee is to be paid at completion of the s106 legal deed, to enable the council to cover the costs of monitoring the commencement of development or other pre commencement triggers. The fee will be periodically reviewed to ensure the administrative costs associated with monitoring and managing developer contributions are covered by the fee.
Where RAMS Habitats Mitigation payments are paid in advance of the planning permission and are not included within a s106 agreement, these obligations will not be subject to the monitoring fee.
East Suffolk Council undertakes a number of monitoring activities in relation to planning obligations including:
East Suffolk Council's monitoring fee is based on an estimated number of planning obligations managed by the council annually, the percentage of officer time spent on the above activities per obligation and trigger, and the annual cost of software licences per obligation and trigger. Planning obligations will require some degree of the above activities even if they are triggered prior to commencement, therefore the approach ensures that the monitoring fee is fair and reasonable.