Issue - meetings

Commuted Sums and Affordable Housing

Meeting: 16/06/2015 - Cabinet (Item 25)

25 Use of Commuted Sums pdf icon PDF 74 KB

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As detailed in the recommendations.


The Cabinet Member for Housing provided details on the proposed utilisation of commuted sums which were derived for the purposes of providing affordable housing.


A commuted sum was an amount of money paid by a developer to the Council, where the size or scale of a development triggered a requirement for affordable housing but it was not possible to achieve appropriate affordable housing on the site.  That route would be followed only where more direct provision of affordable homes had been explored and the Council was satisfied that it was not workable given the particular circumstances of the proposed development. 


The money would be used to provide affordable housing on an alternative site and the principles applied in the collection and use of payments would be dealt with through a Section 106 legal agreement.


Where a commuted sum was to be considered, the onus was placed on the applicant to demonstrate why it was not possible to provide the affordable housing on-site.


Commuted sums would be earmarked to enable the provision of affordable housing through a variety of means which were outlined in the report.  A record would be kept and monitored of all sums received and how they had been spent through the Council’s monthly capital monitoring exercise.  The Council’s Assets Programme Board would also receive reports and act as the approving body for schemes.


The Cabinet Member for Education asked if commuted sums could be used for schemes outside of the area in which it was provided for.  The Chief Officer (Community and Enterprise) explained that the relevant Town or Community Council would be approached to determine if there was a requirement for affordable housing in that area and if there wasn’t, alternative areas would be considered after a period of two years.  This was to ensure that the money was not returned to the developer which was a requirement if after five years it had not been spent for the purposes provided.




(a)       That the process for the acceptance, calculation use and monitoring of commuted sums as outlined in the report and Local Planning Guidance Note No. 9 – Affordable Housing, be approved; and


(b)       That the revised Local Planning Guidance Note No. 9 be approved.