Call for Evidence - Review of England Local Authority Environmental Regulation Fees and Charges

Closed 3 Nov 2016

Opened 29 Sep 2016

Overview

The Government is conducting a review of Local Authority (LA) environmental permitting fees and charges for regulation of industrial plant in England. LAs regulate certain industrial facilities providing permits which set conditions to control, minimise or avoid local pollution and which set emission limits for certain activities. There are charges for granting or in certain cases for varying a permit and annual substance fees levied by LAs on permitted operators. The fees and charges levied reflect the cost of regulating activity required for the facility.

The aim of the review is to see if:

  • the level of fees and charges are set at the correct level
  • there are ways to reduce burdens for LA regulators and/or for industry
  • there are ways to streamline administrative processes within Government to reduce the burden on the tax payer. 

 

Why We Are Consulting

Defra is seeking evidence on a number of aspects of the LA environmental regulation which impact on the level of regulatory activity required of LAs and whether the current level of fees and charges allow LAs to recover their costs. Some LAs tell us that they are not recovering the full cost of regulating industrial facilities from fees and charges levied. We are therefore interested to understand, with supporting evidence, what changes could be considered.   

In particular we are looking at:

  • the level of fees and charges and whether these enable LAs to fully recover regulatory costs
  • the mechanism for setting fees and charges for LA environmental permits;
  • whether the Risk Methodology used by LAs to determine the fees and charges  applicable to a specific regulated facility can be improved;
  • inspection rates for low risk facilities (such as dry cleaners and petrol stations)
  • charges for derogation applications under the Industrial Emissions Directive

This call for evidence will be of primary interest to LA environmental regulators and operators of regulated facilities.

What Happens Next

We will carefully consider your responses and will develop options to take forward. If we propose any amendments, including any increases, to the fees and charges levied by local authorities we will formally consult. We would aim to do this at the beginning of 2017. 

Audiences

  • Local Authorities
  • Local Authorities
  • SME businesses

Interests

  • Air quality