Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Questions (473)

Finian McGrath

Question:

485 Deputy Finian McGrath asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if he will clarify a matter regarding planning in County Clare (details supplied). [35170/12]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government)

On 6 July 2012, I issued a notice of intent to issue a Direction, together with a draft Direction, to Clare County Council relating to the South Clare Local Area Plan 2012-2018 as adopted by the elected members on 11 June 2012. I formed the provisional opinion to issue such notice on the basis that the Planning Authority had ignored or not taken account of a submission made on my behalf in April 2012 in respect of the proposed material alterations to the draft Local Area Plan and that the Plan is not in compliance with the requirements of section 19, 20 and 177V of the Planning and Development Act 2000 (as amended).

Directive 92/43/EC on the conservation of natural habitats and wild fauna and flora (Habitats Directive) has been fully transposed into Irish law by means of the Planning and Development (Amendment) Act 2010, as amended, and by the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011. Clare County Council as the competent authority, as appropriate, for the purposes of Part XAB of the Planning and Development (Amendment) Act 2010, published in September 2011 a Natura Impact Report (or Habitats Directive Assessment) for the purposes of Article 6 of the Directive on the implications of the draft South Clare Local Area Plan 2012-2018 on any Natura 2000 sites. In addition, the Council published, in March 2012, a Natura Impact Report for the proposed material alterations to the draft Plan. The Habitats Directive Assessment undertaken by Clare County Council, as the competent authority, on the proposed material alteration of the site in question, required that the lands remain zoned as per the draft South Clare Local Area Plan 2012-2018. Both reports are available to download from the Council's website www.clarecoco.ie.