Rutland Interim Housing Position Statement
3 Planning Policy Context
3.1 The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) (July 2021) is a material consideration in planning decisions. At the heart of the NPPF is a presumption in favour of sustainable development. For decision-taking (paragraph 11) this means:
- Approving development proposals that accord with an up-to-date development plan without delay; or
- Where there are no relevant development plan policies, or the policies which are most important for determining the application are out-of-date, granting permission unless:
- The application of policies in the Framework that protect areas or assets of particular importance provides a clear reason for refusing the development proposed; or
- Any adverse impacts of doing so would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits, when assessed against the policies in the Framework as a whole.
3.2 Consideration should be given to footnotes 6 and 7 of the NPPF, as well as other relevant paragraphs of the NPPF.
3.3 Footnote 8 also sets out the circumstances whereby planning policies are considered to be out of date:
"This includes, for applications involving the provision of housing, situations where the local planning authority cannot demonstrate a five-year supply of deliverable housing sites (with the appropriate buffer, as set out in paragraph 74); or where the Housing Delivery Test indicates that the delivery of housing was substantially below (less than 75% of) the housing requirement over the previous three year."
3.4 Planning law requires that applications for planning permission must be in accordance with the Development Plan unless material considerations indicate otherwise. In this context, the Development Plan comprises the documents set out in paragraphs 1.1 and 1.2 above.
3.5 Taking account of the NPPF, as of 1st September 2021, policies which are most important for determining applications proposing housing provision contained within the Development Plan are deemed to be 'out of date'.
3.6 The documents referred to in paragraphs 1.1 and 1.2 above remain part of the Development Plan and will continue to provide the basis for the consideration of most planning applications for development within Rutland. It is only policies which are most important for determining housing applications contained within the Development Plan which are deemed to be 'out of date'. For these applications, planning permission should be granted unless any adverse impacts of doing so would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits, when assessed against the policies in the NPPF taken as a whole.
3.7 The Council has committed to producing a new Local Plan for Rutland. This plan is only at the early stage of plan preparation. In accordance with paragraph 48 of the NPPF, local planning authorities may give weight to relevant policies in emerging plans according to:
- The stage of preparation of the emerging plan (the more advanced its preparation, the greater the weight that may be given);
- The extent to which there are unresolved objections to relevant policies (the less significant the unresolved objections, the greater the weight that may be given); and
- The degree of consistency of the relevant policies in the emerging plan to the NPPF (the closer the policies in the emerging plan to the policies in the NPPF, the greater weight that they may be given).
3.7 As preparation of the Local Plan continues, and in line with the criteria above, consideration will be given (at the time of the application) to the weight of the draft policies in the emerging Local Plan. Planning applications received in advance of the adoption of the Local Plan are expected to demonstrate how they will not undermine the plan-making process in accordance with paragraph 49 of the NPPF.