£2.2 million of ‘section 106’ (s106) contributions were spent in Reading in the year ended 31 March 2017, according to a report received by Reading Borough Council’s policy committee on 12 April.
The school received £57,488.50 from a development at 16a Alpine Street. This was the only s106 money spent in Katesgrove. Nearby Cintra Park also benefited from £1,887 contributed by the same source.
The ‘s106’ charges are levied on certain developments as part of the planning process. The planning portal states that “section 106 agreements… 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”. Planning obligations must be directly relevant to the development and are used for three purposes:
- to prescribe the nature of development (for example, requiring a given portion of housing is affordable),
- to compensate for loss or damage created by a development (for example, loss of open space),
- to mitigate a development’s impact (for example, through increased public transport provision).
Tony Jones, Reading’s lead councillor for education, told the committee that over two thirds (69.9%) of the £2.2 million spent was used for schools in the last financial year. He said that it was “… gratifying to see that where the money coming from planning applications, s106 receipts, had been applied… ”
Just over 25% was spent on arts and leisure, including £166k on the Abbey Quarter, and the remainder was spent on transport and the Battle Community Hub.
- Reading Borough Council policy committee 12 June 2017 papers and webcast
- Planning portal
- £2 million scheme proposed to create new community hubs