Issue - meetings

Community Infrastructure Levy Governance Arrangements

Meeting: 20/06/2022 - Council (Item 10)

10 Community Infrastructure Levy Governance & Section 106 engagement pdf icon PDF 514 KB

Report of the Leader and Cabinet Member Customer and Regulatory Services


The Cabinet Member Customer and Regulatory Services presented the joint report and recorded his thanks to the Leader, Chief Executive and the Director of community and economic development for their contributions.

He reminded Members that CIL was created some years ago to supplement and partly replace S106 agreements, which still persist. Developer contributions were extracted for the benefit of the community and was a complex process. Officers had been requested to keep the process under review, with respect to the levelling up and regeneration bill.

In excess of £1 m had been amassed from CIL charging to date. It was now important and timely to put governance arrangements in place to facilitate the allocation of this money.

The Cabinet Member advised Council that Cabinet had approved XXX and there was now enhanced transparency for S106 processes. He outlined the three elements of CIL as follows:

-       80 % allocation for strategic infrastructure- shared with Tewkesbury and Gloucester via the Joint Strategic Plan (JSP). He believed strongly that the future infrastructure list should reflect the emphasis of this Council on climate change and the environment and could include a wider range of infrastructure including health and education. A Memorandum of Understanding would be created to ensure there was transparency in the democratic and JSP processes and Council would have a vote on the final infrastructure list.

-       15% - 25% neighbourhood allocation - spending within the neighbourhood of contributing development (in the case of the 15% that a Parish Council, without an adopted Neighbourhood Plan, must receive, this is up to a maximum of £100 per existing Council Tax paying dwelling). This allocation must be transferred to the relevant parish council or an upcapped 15% is retained by the Borough Council to be spent on neighbourhood projects where the development is not in a parish. The transferred allocation rises to an upcapped 25% when a parish or Neighbourhood Forum has a ‘made’ (adopted by Borough Council) Neighbourhood Plan in place. No Cheltenham parish or forum has a Neighbourhood Plan in place at the current time, although plans are being developed at Hester’s Way Neighbourhood Forum and Leckhampton with Warden Hill Parish Council.

-       5% allocation to use to offset costs of CIL administration


The Cabinet Member highlighted that half of the borough lay in unparished areas and a governance process was required in those areas to allocate how the 15% of CIL generated in those areas would be allocated. A 7-Member neighbourhood panel was therefore proposed which would reflect political balance and comprise representation of such unparished areas of the town. This would set the priority funding projects for CIL allocation.

In terms of existing S106 agreements which are technical and legal agreements between the developer and planning officer, acting on legal advice, Councillors often feel that historically they appear without their input . A governance process was now proposed that where there is a possibility of a S106 agreement the planning officer would consult local members in that ward in  ...  view the full minutes text for item 10

Meeting: 05/04/2022 - Cabinet (Item 5)

5 Community Infrastructure Levy Governance & Section 106 engagement pdf icon PDF 623 KB

Report of the Leader of the Council and the Cabinet Member Customer and Regulatory Services



1.       The percentage split of CIL, in accordance with the CIL Regulations as set out in Fig 1, be noted;

2.       The governance approach for the strategic (non-neighbourhood) CIL monies be agreed, including the preparation of the Infrastructure List as set out at section 2 of this report, and engagement with Gloucester City Council and Tewkesbury Borough Council on any shared infrastructure spending, which ensures that the Cheltenham Cabinet and Council has final approval;

3.       Collaborative work be undertaken with Gloucester and Tewkesbury Councils on developing a spending mechanism for any shared CIL spending to be agreed by Cheltenham Cabinet and Council;

4.       The governance approach as set out at section 4 of this report in regard to the unparished neighbourhood element of CIL be agreed;

5.       The Head of Planning, in consultation with the Cabinet portfolio holder and Head of Finance, undertake an annual review of the CIL administration element and for this spending to be agreed annually by Cabinet as part of the Infrastructure Statement Annual Report;

6.       The proposal as set out in section 6 of this report to build enhanced transparency and engagement with ward members on S106 be agreed.


The Cabinet Member Customer and Regulatory Services presented the report, noting that it would be voted on at June Council. The proposed new governance arrangements covered all aspects of the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) developer contributions, and proposed a scheme for greater transparency in the handling of Section 106 agreements.


He noted that the council was currently allowed to charge up to 5% for admin, which was then pooled, but in the new arrangements they could vote to retain some of it as Cheltenham administration costs if the amount of CIL money grew sufficiently to enable that. Further to this, he noted the 15% or 25% neighbourhood allocation that went to parish councils (depending on whether they had a Neighbourhood Plan) and that governance arrangements had been added for the element of this allocation that was from unparished areas. It suggested a process whereby a panel of seven elected members ideally reflecting a political balance would prioritise projects for the benefit of the community.


The report also outlined governance arrangements for the larger and more complicated strategic allocation pot, which constituted about 70-80% of CIL monies. The current arrangement was to pool that with other Joint Core Strategy (JCS) authorities, so the process had to be compatible with that going forward. The report made a concrete commitment for this council to vote on the final CIL allocation, taking the form of an infrastructure list, comprising both the shared element and uniquely Cheltenham elements.


The government had also published a memorandum of understanding which outlined good practice in deciding how much was pooled and how much was not, which Council would also vote on in June. He added that the arrangements for a strategic CIL board would be determined at JCS level. Finally, the report outlined governance arrangements for the handling of S106 agreements between the council and developers. While S106 agreements were a legal requirement, so the council’s ability to influence the process was limited, it was proposed that Members would be obligated to suggest possible candidates for S106 funds in their wards, and for case officers to notify the relevant ward Members early in the process so they had the opportunity to input into it. He emphasised that they had taken a belt and braces approach throughout to cover every possible eventuality, and aimed to ensure a democratic, safe and accountable process.


The Leader added that she had recently attended a Joint Core Strategy Member Liaison Working Group, and noted that its name was due to change to the Joint Strategic Plan.


The Cabinet Member Safety and Communities asked about the implications for funding in wards that were divided between parished and non-parished areas. The Cabinet Member Customer and Regulatory Services responded that 70-80% of CIL money from any area would go into the strategic pool to benefit the community as a whole, which included non-parished areas. While the 15% or 25% neighbourhood allocation automatically went to the parish council in a parished area, in an unparished area it  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5