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“So you think you want to apply for PSDF
funding year 1?”
Online event – presentation for web
August 2023
local.gov.uk/pas
This session
1. Introductions
2. What we know about the fund
– Q&A
3. What we guess about the fund
– Q&A
4. So … are you going to apply?
1. Introductions
• Hello! (again?)
• Also in the room are …
• We are a big group, but we’re going to try and have some
Q&A too
• And a bit of interactivity
– Don’t be shy
• I might have made mistakes – feel free to tell me!
– Or just disagree with me anyway. I enjoy it.
– Remember I’m trying to be helpful and impartial
2. What we know about the fund
• The guidance is essential reading (some of you haven’t)
– Better thought of as two funds?
• It was launched at pace
– Some of the thinking is still happening
– Some basic questions don’t have answers yet
– But the guidance has already been updated, it might again
• It’s part of a wider and longer-term programme
– Not a stand-alone silver bullet
– Nor ideal (treasury rules etc)
2. What we know about the fund
• Worth crunching the
numbers
– We don’t know split
– Think about pot size
– And sequence
• backlog 1st
• skills 2nd
• £100k = MAX
– You can ask for less
• Year 2 might change
24,000,000.00
£ over two years
year 1 12,000,000.00
£ ? we don't know the split
each council max 100,000.00
£
120 awards at max
backlog funding max 75% 9,000,000.00
£ in year 1
skills funding remainder 3,000,000.00
£
90 awards for backlog
30 awards for skills
Q: will there be 90 bids for backlog? Maybe, maybe not
2. What we know about the fund(s)
• Yes Please
– Consultancy, hiring people and seed funding for new posts
– Acting on root causes of backlog and/or specialist resources
– Additionality
– Joint applications, match funding, collaboration and longer term
projects (but see timetable later)
– National Parks
• No thanks
– Nutrients, NSIPs, ICT, neighbourhoods [but see pots
elsewhere]
2. What we know about the fund
• Working back from the thing you need to make
– 11th September submission
– 11 x questions about your LPA
– 27 x questions if you bid for backlog *
– 14 x questions if you bid for skills *
• Via an online form
• With sign-off (agreement?) of your s151 officer
* You can bid for both, but total = £100k
2. What we know about the fund (eligibility)
• Backlog funding - this is only available to local planning
authorities in England who are decision-makers on
planning applications. It is the responsibility of each
authority to demonstrate the nature and scale of their
planning applications backlog. [and not upper tier?]
• Skills funding - this is available for all local authorities in
England involved in plan-making and decision-making to
apply for, which includes upper tier authorities such as
county councils.
Sidebar: what
is “backlog”?
• You might not
have any
– That’s OK
– Don’t try to invent
it
• 8 / 13 / 26 weeks:
who cares?
– What matters is
development and
delay
General backlog
(or how many cases in the queue is healthy?)
For example ….
1000 cases per year
19.23 decisions per week
if on average each one takes 8 weeks
153.85 work in progress
15% is normal / necessary
so, a backlog of 30% is twice as big as it should be
remember also question 14 invites you to compare backlog to 5 years ago
Specific backlog
A particular class of work that is out of time
eg 6 x major houses? 2 x Solar?
Or perhaps discharge of conditions? Not PS2 but still an impact
Backlog funding = get them out the door
Maybe part-funded by developer with PPA?
Maybe to procure expertise?
2. What we know about the fund (criteria)
Applications will be considered against the following criteria:
• ​Evidence of need
• ​Outputs of the proposal
• ​Outcomes of the proposal
• ​Costs and value for money
• ​Deliverability
Unknown weightings / scores (and they might be different
anyway for different sorts of application)
2. What we know about the fund (eval)
DLUHC will review and assess the applications against the criteria
and consider:
• Whether the organisation meets the eligibility criteria and the
assessment criteria set out above [by scoring them in some way?]
• Prioritising certain assessment criteria over others (noting this
must be applied consistently to all cases) [by weighting the
scores?]
• Aiming to ensure a diversity of local authorities are supported in
terms of nature, size and location
• Whether the applicant(s) agree to participate in a learning
programme aimed at sharing insight and best practice about how
to improve service delivery
2. What we know about the fund (time)
The envisaged timeline is:
• 24 July 2023: application process launches
• 11 September 2023: application process closes
• September 2023: applications assessed by DLUHC
• October 2023: announcement of successful local
authorities
March 2024 – projects finish
2. What we know about the fund (time)
Can local authorities apply for multi-year funding?
• Under this application [in year 1], the bid cap is £100K.
Applicants should clearly state how much funding is
required over the full duration of their project. If the
project runs beyond the end of this financial year, there
is no guarantee that funding will be available to the
same local authority in the financial year 2024/25.
So the answer is “no” .. ? This is a dilemma. Good things
take time!
2. What we know about the fund (time)
When will the first grants payments be issued?
• We anticipate notifying successful local authorities in
October 2023. No grant payment shall be made in
advance of need.
This means you don’t get paid “upfront”
You have to demonstrate need first (like nutrients)
That’s why you don’t get to keep unspent cash (because
by definition there can’t be any)
2. What we know about the fund (time)
Remember this is going to be a cash-rich
cohort, all seeking supply at the same time
Demand spike leads to cost spike? Or loss of
people to private sector / agency routes? We
need to be collectively sensible
Procurement? Supplier capacity?
These are all criteria #5 questions. Have some
answers.
September application
October result
November spend
December spend
January spend
February spend
March reclaim
Over to you
• Pause / questions / comments on the facts of the fund
• (we’re going to share some PAS thoughts and guesses
about the fund, bidding strategy and timetables in a
moment)
What we guess about the fund
• Strict March deadline is a kicker
– But there may be ways of approaching “need”
• Avoid the chicken & egg
– And you might have in-house options?
• You are competing with each other for a slice of the pie
– Some of it is out of your control (where you are in the country)
– Some of you just don’t have a backlog
– Recognise that luck is going to play a part
What we guess about the fund
• Step back and think “success”
– Focus on outcomes – this is what matters
– The spirit of the rules and DLUHC / treasury
perspectives
• The backlog story needs to be bigger than
numbers
– Cornwall backlog is probably 30x bigger than
Redditch
– Smaller councils must work in ratios (for general
backlog) or impact (for specific backlog)
Other things to think about
• Think through standing up the project
– Can you be prepared either way? How might you manage the
multi-year risk (ie not getting £ in year 2)
– Avoid sticking plasters. Think resilience, lasting change and the
accompanying increase in planning fees.
• Joint bids scale really well (esp for skills)
– Might this be a great kickstart for a shared resource?
– 8 x councils enter into a JV for 3 years = £800k and a “need”
– Perhaps more thinking to do on this for a year 2 bid?
• Remember year 2 isn’t far
away
– If you do defer, say so
– Don’t make Govt guess. Tell
them how you think the fund
will work best. Explain what
you want from year 2 now!
year 1 year 2 ?
September application
October result
November spend
December spend
January spend application
February spend result
March reclaim
April spend
May spend
June spend
July spend
August spend
September spend
October spend
November spend
December spend
January spend
February spend
March reclaim
So … are you going to apply?
1. Are you going to apply for year 1?
2. Did this session help you to decide what to do and
make a better job of it?
• Anything we haven’t covered in this session?
Next steps
• Shelly will have some follow-up comms
– Ask you some questions about skills etc
• Neil will invite you to contribute your thoughts on the
scheme more widely
– Embedding user research to all stages of the project
– Not just people applying the fund – but also people who have
decided not to
• capacityandcapability@levellingup.gov.uk
Thank you
Email pas@local.gov.uk
Web www.local.gov.uk/pas
Twitter @Pas_Team

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So you want to apply for the Planning Skills Delivery Fund PAS Events August 2023 year 1

  • 1. “So you think you want to apply for PSDF funding year 1?” Online event – presentation for web August 2023 local.gov.uk/pas
  • 2. This session 1. Introductions 2. What we know about the fund – Q&A 3. What we guess about the fund – Q&A 4. So … are you going to apply?
  • 3. 1. Introductions • Hello! (again?) • Also in the room are … • We are a big group, but we’re going to try and have some Q&A too • And a bit of interactivity – Don’t be shy • I might have made mistakes – feel free to tell me! – Or just disagree with me anyway. I enjoy it. – Remember I’m trying to be helpful and impartial
  • 4. 2. What we know about the fund • The guidance is essential reading (some of you haven’t) – Better thought of as two funds? • It was launched at pace – Some of the thinking is still happening – Some basic questions don’t have answers yet – But the guidance has already been updated, it might again • It’s part of a wider and longer-term programme – Not a stand-alone silver bullet – Nor ideal (treasury rules etc)
  • 5. 2. What we know about the fund • Worth crunching the numbers – We don’t know split – Think about pot size – And sequence • backlog 1st • skills 2nd • £100k = MAX – You can ask for less • Year 2 might change 24,000,000.00 £ over two years year 1 12,000,000.00 £ ? we don't know the split each council max 100,000.00 £ 120 awards at max backlog funding max 75% 9,000,000.00 £ in year 1 skills funding remainder 3,000,000.00 £ 90 awards for backlog 30 awards for skills Q: will there be 90 bids for backlog? Maybe, maybe not
  • 6. 2. What we know about the fund(s) • Yes Please – Consultancy, hiring people and seed funding for new posts – Acting on root causes of backlog and/or specialist resources – Additionality – Joint applications, match funding, collaboration and longer term projects (but see timetable later) – National Parks • No thanks – Nutrients, NSIPs, ICT, neighbourhoods [but see pots elsewhere]
  • 7. 2. What we know about the fund • Working back from the thing you need to make – 11th September submission – 11 x questions about your LPA – 27 x questions if you bid for backlog * – 14 x questions if you bid for skills * • Via an online form • With sign-off (agreement?) of your s151 officer * You can bid for both, but total = £100k
  • 8. 2. What we know about the fund (eligibility) • Backlog funding - this is only available to local planning authorities in England who are decision-makers on planning applications. It is the responsibility of each authority to demonstrate the nature and scale of their planning applications backlog. [and not upper tier?] • Skills funding - this is available for all local authorities in England involved in plan-making and decision-making to apply for, which includes upper tier authorities such as county councils.
  • 9. Sidebar: what is “backlog”? • You might not have any – That’s OK – Don’t try to invent it • 8 / 13 / 26 weeks: who cares? – What matters is development and delay General backlog (or how many cases in the queue is healthy?) For example …. 1000 cases per year 19.23 decisions per week if on average each one takes 8 weeks 153.85 work in progress 15% is normal / necessary so, a backlog of 30% is twice as big as it should be remember also question 14 invites you to compare backlog to 5 years ago Specific backlog A particular class of work that is out of time eg 6 x major houses? 2 x Solar? Or perhaps discharge of conditions? Not PS2 but still an impact Backlog funding = get them out the door Maybe part-funded by developer with PPA? Maybe to procure expertise?
  • 10. 2. What we know about the fund (criteria) Applications will be considered against the following criteria: • ​Evidence of need • ​Outputs of the proposal • ​Outcomes of the proposal • ​Costs and value for money • ​Deliverability Unknown weightings / scores (and they might be different anyway for different sorts of application)
  • 11. 2. What we know about the fund (eval) DLUHC will review and assess the applications against the criteria and consider: • Whether the organisation meets the eligibility criteria and the assessment criteria set out above [by scoring them in some way?] • Prioritising certain assessment criteria over others (noting this must be applied consistently to all cases) [by weighting the scores?] • Aiming to ensure a diversity of local authorities are supported in terms of nature, size and location • Whether the applicant(s) agree to participate in a learning programme aimed at sharing insight and best practice about how to improve service delivery
  • 12. 2. What we know about the fund (time) The envisaged timeline is: • 24 July 2023: application process launches • 11 September 2023: application process closes • September 2023: applications assessed by DLUHC • October 2023: announcement of successful local authorities March 2024 – projects finish
  • 13. 2. What we know about the fund (time) Can local authorities apply for multi-year funding? • Under this application [in year 1], the bid cap is £100K. Applicants should clearly state how much funding is required over the full duration of their project. If the project runs beyond the end of this financial year, there is no guarantee that funding will be available to the same local authority in the financial year 2024/25. So the answer is “no” .. ? This is a dilemma. Good things take time!
  • 14. 2. What we know about the fund (time) When will the first grants payments be issued? • We anticipate notifying successful local authorities in October 2023. No grant payment shall be made in advance of need. This means you don’t get paid “upfront” You have to demonstrate need first (like nutrients) That’s why you don’t get to keep unspent cash (because by definition there can’t be any)
  • 15. 2. What we know about the fund (time) Remember this is going to be a cash-rich cohort, all seeking supply at the same time Demand spike leads to cost spike? Or loss of people to private sector / agency routes? We need to be collectively sensible Procurement? Supplier capacity? These are all criteria #5 questions. Have some answers. September application October result November spend December spend January spend February spend March reclaim
  • 16. Over to you • Pause / questions / comments on the facts of the fund • (we’re going to share some PAS thoughts and guesses about the fund, bidding strategy and timetables in a moment)
  • 17. What we guess about the fund • Strict March deadline is a kicker – But there may be ways of approaching “need” • Avoid the chicken & egg – And you might have in-house options? • You are competing with each other for a slice of the pie – Some of it is out of your control (where you are in the country) – Some of you just don’t have a backlog – Recognise that luck is going to play a part
  • 18. What we guess about the fund • Step back and think “success” – Focus on outcomes – this is what matters – The spirit of the rules and DLUHC / treasury perspectives • The backlog story needs to be bigger than numbers – Cornwall backlog is probably 30x bigger than Redditch – Smaller councils must work in ratios (for general backlog) or impact (for specific backlog)
  • 19. Other things to think about • Think through standing up the project – Can you be prepared either way? How might you manage the multi-year risk (ie not getting £ in year 2) – Avoid sticking plasters. Think resilience, lasting change and the accompanying increase in planning fees. • Joint bids scale really well (esp for skills) – Might this be a great kickstart for a shared resource? – 8 x councils enter into a JV for 3 years = £800k and a “need” – Perhaps more thinking to do on this for a year 2 bid?
  • 20. • Remember year 2 isn’t far away – If you do defer, say so – Don’t make Govt guess. Tell them how you think the fund will work best. Explain what you want from year 2 now! year 1 year 2 ? September application October result November spend December spend January spend application February spend result March reclaim April spend May spend June spend July spend August spend September spend October spend November spend December spend January spend February spend March reclaim
  • 21. So … are you going to apply? 1. Are you going to apply for year 1? 2. Did this session help you to decide what to do and make a better job of it? • Anything we haven’t covered in this session?
  • 22. Next steps • Shelly will have some follow-up comms – Ask you some questions about skills etc • Neil will invite you to contribute your thoughts on the scheme more widely – Embedding user research to all stages of the project – Not just people applying the fund – but also people who have decided not to • capacityandcapability@levellingup.gov.uk
  • 23. Thank you Email pas@local.gov.uk Web www.local.gov.uk/pas Twitter @Pas_Team