|We wish give an important update to members in relation to the suspension of Part 8 reserved functions for a Council’s own housing developments. |
In December 2022 the Planning and Development and Foreshore (Amendment) Bill 2022 was processed through the Oireachtas.
At short notice an amendment was introduced to the Bill which has the effect of removing the “Part 8” procedure belonging to the elected council in relation to the council’s own housing developments. This amendment means that development of houses built by the Council either directly, or by contract with another entity, can proceed without being formally considered by the elected members.
This also applies to ancillary facilities servicing the housing development such as car parks, service pipes, and similar resources. The Chief Executive is mandated to provide information and plans to the Council but is not required to have regard to the response of the Council to the housing proposal.
There are certain qualifications to this new procedure:
a) The development must be on land zoned residential and not in contravention with the development plan. b) The construction must be on land in the ownership of the Council or of a state body.
c) The land must be serviced by public utilities or be capable of being so serviced.
d) The development must commence on or before 31 December 2024.
The Association’s Executive Committee at its January 2023 meeting instructed that a letter be sent to the Minister expressing our anger and disappointment at the removal of the Councillors’ reserved function under “Part 8”. It was also requested that the Minister be urged to: a) Require that Chief Executives table such proposals at a meeting of the Council and take into account any views of the elected council b) Reiterate that this exceptional provision will not be continued beyond 2024.
For clarity, the “Part 8” procedure remains in place for all non-housing Council developments.