County in talks with Government about investment zones

Published on: Friday, 30th September 2022

Derbyshire County Council is in discussions with Government about establishing an investment zone in Derbyshire to encourage investment, support economic growth and create jobs.

The council is one of 38 local authorities which have expressed an interest in establishing an investment zone to drive business growth and speed up development.

Areas hosting Investment Zones will benefit from:

  • Lower taxes – businesses in designated sites will benefit from time-limited tax benefits including 100% business rates relief on newly occupied and expanded premises; full stamp duty land tax relief on land bought for commercial or residential development; and a zero rate for Employer National Insurance contributions on new employee earnings up to £50,270 per year. Councils hosting Investment Zones will receive 100% of the business rates growth above an agreed baseline in designated sites for 25 years.
     
  • Accelerated development – there will be designated development sites to both release more land for housing and commercial development, and to support accelerated development. The need for planning applications will be minimised and where planning applications remain necessary, they will be radically streamlined. Development sites may be co-located with, or separate to, tax sites, depending on what makes most sense for the local economy.
     
  • Wider support for local growth – subject to demonstrating readiness, Mayoral Combined Authorities hosting Investment Zones will receive a single local growth settlement.

Councillor Barry Lewis, Leader of Derbyshire County Council and Cabinet Member for Strategic Leadership, Culture, Tourism and Climate Change, said: “We have a number of potential sites in Derbyshire which we believe would be good candidates for an Investment Zone and we welcome the opportunity to discuss this further with Government.

“While the selection criteria to become an Investment Zone and the process for designating sites within it hasn’t yet been announced, we’ve submitted an initial expression of interest.

“We’re pleased Government has confirmed that Investment Zones would not impact on existing protections for the environment which are set out in law through the Environment Act and we look forward to understanding more about how they could benefit our businesses and boost the local economy.

“As the plans develop, we’ll work closely with the relevant district and borough councils in Derbyshire, as well as landowners and businesses within potential Investment Zones in the county, to bring forward investment and economic growth which will benefit the whole of Derbyshire.”

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