Investing in planning - resourcing Scotland's planning system consultation: impact assessments

This consultation on resourcing Scotland’s planning system responds to current resourcing challenges. It builds on ideas generated in a stakeholder workshop held in November 2023, and sets out a series of proposals which aim to improve capacity and build resilience.

Child Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment (CRWIA)


This draft document is an initial assessment of the impact of proposals included in the Investing in Planning Consultation and the Scottish Government will continue to review and update this document where required during the decision making process. Any future iterations will reflect an increased understanding of these impacts as the amount of data and research available continues to grow.

This impact assessment should be read in conjunction with the Equality Impact Assessment and the Fairer Scotland Duty Assessment.

Brief Summary

The Scottish Government is committed to working with all stakeholders to ensure that the planning system is better equipped to deal with current and future challenges.

This consultation sets out a range of options which have the potential to improve the capacity of the Scottish planning system, in particular in planning authorities, in the coming years. It responds to current and future challenges, with a view to identifying a set of short and medium term actions that could improve the capacity of the planning system by helping build resilience and by strengthening cross sector collaboration.

The changes that are being proposed are to ensure that the planning system operates effectively and in a way that is compatible with the Scottish Government's wider policy objectives for the planning system.

Which aspects of the relevant proposal currently affects or will affect children and young people up to the age of 18?

The consultation includes the following new proposals:

  • A central planning hub to support authorities
  • Short term working group to look at proportionality of assessments
  • Taking stock of the use of processing agreements
  • Improved cross council working to better align consents
  • Developing templates for Section 75 agreements
  • Devolving power to authorities to locally set planning fees
  • Introducing an annual inflationary increase in planning fees
  • Increasing discretionary charging including processing agreements, sites not allocated in the development plan and masterplan consent areas
  • Introducing fees for appeals
  • Service charge for submitting applications online
  • Considering the potential to alter the threshold for applications under the Electricity Act
  • Introducing a fee category for hydrogen projects
  • Increased fees for prior notification and approval categories.
  • Consistent approach to fees for shellfish farming

It is considered that the proposals included within the consultation will not directly impact children and young people, as the proposals relate primarily to processes and procedures which support the effective determination of applications for planning permission and the fees and charges which may apply. The proposals are likely to primarily affect planning authorities and those applying for planning permission.

Which groups of children and young people are currently or will be affected by the relevant proposal?

As indicated above it is considered that the proposals included in the consultation will not directly impact children or young people.

The consultation does include reference to raising awareness and encouraging young people to consider and take up a career in planning which is part of wider work being taken forward by a range of stakeholders including Planning Authorities and the Royal Town Planning Institute and it is not a consultation proposal.


Is a Stage 2 Children’s Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment required?

CRWIA required ☐ No explanation required, please complete questions 5 and 6

CRWIA not required ☒ Please explain why below and contact the children’s rights unit to discuss this decision

Explanation why CRWIA is not required:

We do not consider that the proposals included in the consultation will affect children or young people under the age of 18 and therefore a Children’s Rights and Wellbeing Impact Assessment is not being completed.

The proposals included in the consultation are aimed at improving the resources and skills available to planning authorities in order to improve the process of determining planning applications and are expected to impact, primarily, local authorities and those who submit applications for planning permission.

We will use the consultation process as a means to explore fully any potential equality impacts. Comments received would be used to determine if any further work in this area is needed, including full assessments.

Sign & Date

Policy Lead Signature & Date of Sign Off:

Chris Sinclair – 8 February 2024

Deputy Director Signature & Date of Sign Off:

Dr Fiona Simpson, Chief Planner & Director of Planning Architecture and Regeneration Division – 8 February 2024



Back to top