The Minister for Housing and Planning, Jan O’Sullivan, TD, has issued a notice of intent to issue a Direction to Midleton Town Council relating to the Midleton Town Development Plan 2013 which was adopted by councillors on 21 January 2013.
The draft Direction proposes to change the Town Council’s decision to zone certain lands in Mogeesha as suitable for town centre use and revert to an open space/recreation/amenity zoning status.
The reasons for the Minister’s intervention are:
· Land is located in an area that has a high probability of flooding and is in contravention of the Planning System and Flood Risk Guidelines.
· Alternative lands to facilitate town centre expansion are available
· Land is removed from the core of the town and is not essential to the future development of Midleton.
On foot of receiving the notice of the Minister’s intent to issue a Direction, Midleton Town Council must now publish the notice for public consultation (within 2 weeks of its receipt) and provide for a consultation period up to a maximum of two weeks. It is also open to councillors to make their own submission including directly to the Minister during the public consultation period.
Within four weeks after the public consultation process is completed, the manager of the Council must report back to the Minister on the observations or submissions received.
The Minister will consider the Manager’s Report and if no changes or further investigation are required, the Minister can decide to issue the direction (with or without minor amendments) within three weeks of receipt of the Manager’s Report or the Minister can decide not to issue the Direction.
In the event further investigation is required the Minister may appoint an inspector within three weeks of receipt of the Manager’s Report and the inspector would review the draft direction and consult accordingly and report back to the Minister for final decision.
Where the Minister issues a final Direction, it is deemed to have immediate effect and its terms are considered to be incorporated into the plan.