The Government has launched a consultation on further reforms to the compulsory purchase system, with proposed changes covering the principles of assessing compensation and improvements to technical processes.
The consultation follows an earlier consultation in March 2015 on measures that are now being taken forward in the Housing and Planning Bill.
The Department for Communities and Local Government said a number of respondents had expressed the view in the first consultation that there was a need to go even further.
The latest consultation paper said the new round of proposals were intended to make the compulsory purchase process “clearer, faster and fairer”.
The package of proposals is aimed at achieving the following outcomes:
“a) the system will be clearer because the measures will:
i. set out a clearer way to identify market value when agreeing levels of compensation
ii. put mayoral development corporations on the same footing as new town and urban development corporations for the purposes of assessing compensation
iii. simplify the process by enabling transport and regeneration bodies to make combined orders
iv. repeal redundant legislation
b) the system will be fairer for those whose interests are compulsorily acquired (claimants) because the measures will:
i. ensure that compensation due to those with an interest in the land arising from minor tenancies is calculated on the same basis as others who are in lawful possession but have no further interest in the land
ii. ensure that those claimants who suffer the greatest inconvenience (ie occupiers) receive the greater share of loss payments
iii. building on Housing and Planning Bill proposals to further encourage prompt payment of advance payments of compensation by setting the penalty interest rate for late payment
iv. ensure that claimants in properties with rateable values higher than the current threshold are not systematically excluded from issuing blight notices in areas of the country with high land values, such as London
c) the system will be fairer for acquiring authorities because:
i. there will be consistent powers for all acquiring authorities to temporarily use land for the purposes of delivering their scheme
d) the system will be faster for all parties because:
i. there will be a new legislative requirement to bring compulsory purchase orders into operation within a certain period.”
The paper can be viewed here. The consultation paper runs until 11.45 pm on 15 May 2016.