Localism Bill: second reading

08 June 2011

The Localism Bill has its second reading in the House of Lords on Tuesday 7 June. The Bill contains provisions for local government and community empowerment, planning, housing and the governance of London.

A House of Lords Library Note summarises proceedings at the Bill’s final stages in the Commons.

Key elements of the Bill include provisions:

  • for community empowerment with powers to enable people to instigate local referendums on any issue, to approve or veto in a referendum a council tax increase deemed to be excessive, to express an interest in running local authority services and to provide local community groups with an opportunity to bid to buy assets of community value.
  • to abolish regional strategies, provide for neighbourhood plans, make pre-application consultation compulsory, make changes to planning enforcement and in relation to nationally significant infrastructure.

The purpose of the Bill was described in the Commons, where it started its progression through Parliament, as a ‘shake up the balance of power in this country, revitalising local democracy and putting power back where it belongs, in the hands of the people.’

The Localism Bill had its first reading in the House of Lords on 19 May. 

Further information

Second reading is the first opportunity for Members of the Lords to debate the main principles and purpose of the Bill and to flag up concerns and areas where they think changes (amendments) are needed.

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