Planning magazine suggests that the government test that comes into effect in November is likely to require more than half of English local authorities to demonstrate that they have a housing land supply that is 20 per cent above what is essential to meet need over the next five years.
The Planning Officers Society, which represents senior local authority planners, thinks that the delivery test could eventually have big implications. "It will require a change of emphasis," said Senior Vice-President Steve Ingram. "It will mean moving away from seeing granting permission as the end of the process, to seeing it as the start of the process."
From November 2018, the test will be used to "automatically" apply the presumption in favour of sustainable development in local authorities that are found to have under-delivered housing. Until now, it has only applied to councils that failed to plan for enough homes.
Ingram said that the full likely impact of the test will only become clear once decision-makers have started to apply the presumption, and it becomes clear how it will be weighed against other material considerations.