The increases in fees are part of a move to ensure that local council tax payers do not have to pay for this service. Mr Curry also announced that the Government would be bringing forward legislation to allow local planning authorities to set their own fees.
In a written answer to a Parliamentary Question from Piers Merchant MP (Beckenham), Mr Curry said: 'Fees for planning applications will increase by 15% from 13 January 1994 and a further 15% from 3 January 1995. These increases represent another important step towards applicants meeting the full costs incurred by local planning authorities in determining planning applications. Fees remain a very small proportion of overall development costs, and we believe it is right that applicants, rather than the community, should pay for this service. Amending Regulations, approved by both Houses, have now been made.
'For the future, it is our intention to bring forward legislation, when Parliamentary time is available, to allow local planning authorities to set their own fees. A consultation paper will be issued in due course. My rt. hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland proposes similar arrangements for planning application fees north of the Border.