§ Mr. Ridley
Schedule 32 of the Local Government Planning and Land Act 1980 effectively terminates any planning permission granted by the enterprise zone scheme as soon as the scheme is terminated, generally 10 years after designation. Even if development authorised by the scheme is well under way, completion would then require a further planning permission under ordinary planning powers. My right hon. Friends the Secretaries of State for Scotland and Wales and I are concerned that such an abrupt cut-off could deter developers from investing in zones. We therefore propose that development authorised by the enterprise zone scheme, which had begun before the zone's termination, should continue to have the benefit of that planning permission though not of the other benefits available in enterprise zones. As a safeguard against unreasonable delay in completing developments after an enterprise zone's termination date, we propose to make available to local planning authorities, after the EZ termination date, the completion notice mechanism, which already applies to normal planning permission under S44 of the Town and Country Planning Act, 1971 and section 41 of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1972.
The Government also propose that the same arrangements for serving completion notices would apply in simplified planning zones.
Amendments will be put down shortly to the Housing and Planning Bill to give effect to these proposals.