Council yet to spend £750k of money from developers

The apartment and Tesco store development in Hipperholme
The apartment and Tesco store development in Hipperholme

Calderdale Council says it does have plans for more than three quarters of a million pounds from developers that it is yet to spend.

The council has received £893,709 since 2014 under Section 106 Agreements, which are are private agreements made between local authorities and developers and can be attached to a planning permission to make acceptable development which would otherwise be unacceptable in planning terms.

They can be used to help fund affordable housing as well as roads, parks and youth services and designed to be spent on community projects to offset the impact of local developments.

The council has entered into 14 of these agreements since 2014 but has only spent £115,475, leaving £778,234 unspent.

The biggest amount paid was £400,000 by Barrett David Wilson in June last year in connection with the construction of the Manor House Nursing Home, all of which remains unspent.

Also left unspent by the council was £175,000 from McCarthy and Stone in June 2015 in connection with the Leedham Court development in Hebden Bridge, as is the £100,000 from BDW Trading in January 2014 in connection with Clifton Mills in Bailiff Bridge.

The council has also not spent any of the £45,050 they received from Cowling Swift Kitchen in January 2014 in connection with Clifton Mills in Bailiff Bridge, the £39,370 they received from Candelisa Stone LLP in September 2015 in connection with Alexandra Mill on Burnley Road, or the £606 they received from Stercap Properties in January 2014 in connection with the Tesco in Hipperholme.

Of the money that has been used, £20,856 has gone on infrastructure works at Calder Holmes and Stubbs Field, £9,300 has gone on infrastructure work at Shibden Park, £6,936 has gone on play area improvements in North Halifax and £35,920 has gone on infrastructure improvements in Park Ward.

In a statement, Calderdale Council said: “Projects attached to Section 106 agreements are often designed to deliver significant projects such as affordable housing.

“In many cases these also require the Council to work in partnership with external organisations and private developers that are also subject to separate agreements.

“They may also be subject to the Council’s planning process and need time to be agreed and delivered. Funding from Section 106 agreements will in the main support projects throughout the Borough.

“Funding is retained by the Council until it is fully utilised to deliver projects. It is anticipated at this stage that all Section 106 funding will utilised for its intended purpose.

“Although there is no definitive timetable for the delivery of projects earmarked for funding by Section 106 agreements, it is anticipated at this stage that the majority of the funding will be utilised within the next three years.

“Section 106 agreements are still entered into, but their use is curtailed by Government regulations.

“In future there will be two methods for collecting contributions from developers; the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) and, for new affordable housing and site specific infrastructure, section 106 agreements.

“Calderdale Council’s draft charging schedule for the CIL is currently out for consultation running through to Monday, September 24. All comments received will be submitted to the Secretary of State who will appoint an inspector to examine the CIL alongside the publication draft of the Local Plan.

“The money raised through CIL can be used to fund a wide range of infrastructure needed to support a new development, and can be used across the borough.”