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Planning enforcement - am I going mad?

  • 08-06-2021 3:49pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 6,325 ✭✭✭ Thoie


    I (and other people) had lodged complaints to the planning dept about a temporary entrance that was installed with no permission. The planning dept came back and said that they'd spoken to the owners, and the temporary entrance would be allowed until X was finished, and then would be put back the way it was.

    Recently I wrote back the planning dept pointing out that X had been finished, and was there a rough timeline on when we should expect things to be repaired.

    The council wrote back saying the original file had been closed, and that I'd need to submit a new complaint if I want them to look into it.

    Am I going insane or are they? Is it reasonable that the file has been closed while the temporary entrance is still there? If I don't make a new complaint, would the council just ignore it and then approve retention planning in 7 years?

    If I do make a new complaint, will they come back and say "Oh, it's fine until Y is finished instead"? How do you actually get things enforced?


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 21,792 ✭✭✭✭ mickdw


    Thoie wrote: »
    I (and other people) had lodged complaints to the planning dept about a temporary entrance that was installed with no permission. The planning dept came back and said that they'd spoken to the owners, and the temporary entrance would be allowed until X was finished, and then would be put back the way it was.

    Recently I wrote back the planning dept pointing out that X had been finished, and was there a rough timeline on when we should expect things to be repaired.

    The council wrote back saying the original file had been closed, and that I'd need to submit a new complaint if I want them to look into it.

    Am I going insane or are they? Is it reasonable that the file has been closed while the temporary entrance is still there? If I don't make a new complaint, would the council just ignore it and then approve retention planning in 7 years?

    If I do make a new complaint, will they come back and say "Oh, it's fine until Y is finished instead"? How do you actually get things enforced?
    That is a joke.
    Submit new complaint and keep doing it until you get a satisfactory conclusion.


  • Registered Users Posts: 19,230 ✭✭✭✭ Larbre34


    Send a letter to the Chief Executive of the Council concerned, copy it to the Chairman of the same Council and to the Office of the Planning Regulator in Dublin outlining your complaint as you have here. There should be no requirement to open a separate file on this, nor for you to undertake a fresh complaint.

    Send a registered letter, not an email. You're in the right here and will be vindicated once it's taken out of the hands of the Planning officials on the ground.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,325 ✭✭✭ Thoie


    mickdw wrote: »
    That is a joke.
    Submit new complaint and keep doing it until you get a satisfactory conclusion.

    Well, I'm considering asking how frequently they'd like to receive a new complaint until the issue is resolved. I can write a relatively simple programme and have it automatically submit a complaint as often as I like - it could send one every second, every minute, every week, every 10 days, whatever.

    If they do come back and change the goalposts, what on earth do you do then? I'm relatively sure the people who put in the "temporary entrance" would like it to be permanent, and from the response from the council, they seem to have zero interest in making them stick to the original plans.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,325 ✭✭✭ Thoie


    Larbre34 wrote: »
    Send a letter to the Chief Executive of the Council concerned, copy it to the Chairman of the same Council and to the Office of the Planning Regulator in Dublin outlining your complaint as you have here. There should be no requirement to open a separate file on this, nor for you to undertake a fresh complaint.

    Send a registered letter, not an email. You're in the right here and will be vindicated once it's taken out of the hands of the Planning officials on the ground.

    Thanks!


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,792 ✭✭✭✭ mickdw


    Thoie wrote: »
    Well, I'm considering asking how frequently they'd like to receive a new complaint until the issue is resolved. I can write a relatively simple programme and have it automatically submit a complaint as often as I like - it could send one every second, every minute, every week, every 10 days, whatever.

    If they do come back and change the goalposts, what on earth do you do then? I'm relatively sure the people who put in the "temporary entrance" would like it to be permanent, and from the response from the council, they seem to have zero interest in making them stick to the original plans.
    I wouldnt play silly games with them or your complaints will be thrown in with the crank letters.
    Write a new complaint and highlight once more the illegal entrance and the previous file and expected rectification within a reasonable timeframe which has not happened.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 250 ✭✭ Yakov P. Golyadkin


    It may seem extremely officious but it seems that they are keeping (extremely strictly) to the letter of the law - Once a complaint is received they have six weeks in which to decide whether or not to take enforcement proceedings. İf that six week period has now expired they can't take any action based on your initial complaint. The right thing to do would be to take your latter email as a new complaint and get on with issuing a warning letter but unfortunately the right thing to do isn't always done.

    I wouldn't think there's a need to report it just yet, submit your complaint and see what action is taken.

    Also worth noting that the creation of a temporary entrance to facilitate works can be considered exempt development.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,325 ✭✭✭ Thoie


    mickdw wrote: »
    I wouldnt play silly games with them or your complaints will be thrown in with the crank letters.

    I wasn't actually going to do it, but the response was frustrating. If, as Yakov says below there's a 6 week "deadline", it could in theory mean submitting a new complaint every 6 weeks. How is Joe Public supposed to know how often they need to log something?

    I wouldn't think there's a need to report it just yet, submit your complaint and see what action is taken.

    Also worth noting that the creation of a temporary entrance to facilitate works can be considered exempt development.

    Presumably if it's a temporary entrance to facilitate works, there should be a follow up to ensure it's closed off once the work is completed, or does "exempt" means it's exempt from ever being followed up?

    The concern in the area is that while the entrance was allowed on a temporary basis, if no-one ever follows up it will just stay there forever, and then be granted permission under "retention".


  • Registered Users Posts: 250 ✭✭ Yakov P. Golyadkin


    Thoie wrote: »
    Presumably if it's a temporary entrance to facilitate works, there should be a follow up to ensure it's closed off once the work is completed, or does "exempt" means it's exempt from ever being followed up?

    The concern in the area is that while the entrance was allowed on a temporary basis, if no-one ever follows up it will just stay there forever, and then be granted permission under "retention".

    Absolutely. Now that the development has been completed the temporary entrance should be closed. As said, lodge a second complaint, as frustrating as it may be. İf they fail to follow up on that then it may be necessary to escalate the matter but as it is, I would guess it's just unnecessary bureaucracy on the part of the enforcement section.


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