The Government has paid out the first £15.8m of a £25m fund to help speed up planning decisions and help deliver quality new homes.
The Planning Delivery Fund was announced by former housing minister Alok Sharma last December.
The first wave of funding has now been awarded to help councils process more applications, implement new reforms and train planners to tackle the housing challenges.
A Government statement says the cash will also help local authorities work together on new joint local plans.
The statement adds: “The funding will also support greater best practice and innovation within councils as they decide planning applications, resulting in more being determined over a shorter period of time.”
This first wave of funding has been split into three streams.
These are the Joint Working Fund (£9.4m), Design Quality Fund (£4.82m) and Promoting Innovation Fund (£1.07m).
The Government got 383 applications for funding for the first wave.
The rest of the cash will be paid out after a future round of bidding.
Housing and planning minister Dominic Raab says: “This cash boost ensures councils have the resources needed to make quicker decisions on planning applications, delivering quality housing at a faster rate.
“It’s part of our strategy to build the homes this country needs whilst also supporting residents to have their say on the kind of development that takes place in their area.”