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The Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2017

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PART 5Publicity and Consultation

Publicity where an environmental statement is submitted

18.—(1) Where an environmental statement is submitted the council or, as the case may be, the Department shall, when it receives the environmental statement publish a notice, by local advertisement, stating —

(a)that an application for planning permission or a subsequent application has been made to the council or, as the case may be, the Department and is accompanied by an environmental statement;

(b)the address or location and nature of the proposed development;

(c)in the case of an application for planning permission, that the environmental statement is available for inspection free of charge and the times and places at which, and the means by which, it is available for inspection;

(d)in the case of a subsequent application, that a copy of the planning permission and supporting documents for the development in respect of which the application has been made, may be inspected by members of the public at all reasonable hours at the relevant office of the council or, as the case may be, the Department;

(e)details of a website maintained by or on behalf of the council or, as the case may be, the Department on which the environmental statement and other documents have been made available in accordance with paragraph (3);

(f)a postal address (within the locality in which the land proposed to be developed is situated) at which copies of the environmental statement may be obtained from the applicant in accordance with regulation 19(a), so long as stocks last, and if a charge is to be made for a copy, the amount of the charge; and

(g)that any person wishing to make representations about the application should make them in writing to the council or, as the case may be, the Department, and the latest date by which representations should be made (being a date not less than 30 days from the date on which the notice is first published).

(2) Where the council or, as the case may be, the Department is aware of any particular person who is or is likely to be affected by, or has an interest in, the application for planning permission or subsequent application, and who is unlikely to become aware of it by means of a local advertisement, it shall send a notice in writing to such person containing the details set out in the notice under paragraph (1) and the address of the relevant office of the council or, as the case may be, the Department.

(3) The council or, as the case may be, the Department shall make the environmental statement available for inspection on a website maintained by it or on its behalf.

Availability of copies of environmental statement

19.  An applicant who submits an environmental statement shall—

(a)ensure that a reasonable number of copies of the statement are made available at the address given in the notice pursuant to regulation 18(1)(f); and

(b)provide the council or, as the case may be, the Department with sufficient copies of it, or parts of it, to enable the council or, as the case may be, the Department to comply with regulation 20 and 3 additional copies.

Consultation where environmental statement submitted

20.—(1) Where the council receives an environmental statement in relation to a proposed development, it shall consult any other council and bodies mentioned in regulation 9(3) and inform them that they may make representations.

(2) Where the Department receives an environmental statement in relation to a proposed development, it shall consult the council in whose district the proposed development is to be situated and bodies mentioned in regulation 9(4) and inform them that they may make representations.

(3) The council or, as the case may be, the Department shall give not less than 30 days notice to any council and bodies consulted under paragraph (1) or (2) that environmental information is to be taken into account in determining the application for planning permission or subsequent application.

Further information and evidence relating to environmental statement

21.—(1) Where the applicant has submitted a statement which the applicant refers to as an environmental statement and the council or, as the case may be, the Department is of the opinion that, in order to satisfy the requirements of regulation 11(2), the statement should contain supplementary information which is directly relevant to reaching a reasoned conclusion on the significant effects of the development described in the application on the environment in order to be an environmental statement, it shall require the applicant, by notice in writing, to submit that supplementary information, and such information provided by the applicant is referred to in these Regulations as “further information”.

(2) The council or, as the case may be, the Department may, by notice in writing, require an applicant to produce such evidence as it may reasonably call for to verify any information in the environmental statement.

(3) On receipt of a notice under paragraphs (1) and (2) the applicant shall submit the further information or evidence within three months from the date of the notice or such extended period as may be agreed in writing between the applicant and the council or, as the case may be, the Department and, if not so submitted, the application shall be deemed to be refused, and a deemed refusal by the council shall not give rise to an appeal to the Commission by virtue of section 58 or 60.

(4) Subject to paragraph (6), regulations 18 to 20 shall apply where such further information and any other information is received by the council or, as the case may be, the Department, as if references to “environmental statement” were references to “further information and any other information”.

(5) Subject to paragraph (6), where information is requested under paragraph (1) or any other information is received by the council or, as the case may be, the Department, it shall suspend determination of the application and shall not determine it before the expiry of the period of 30 days after the date on which notice of that information was published under regulation 18, or the expiry of the period of notice given to bodies consulted about that information under regulation 20, whichever is the latest.

(6) Paragraphs (4) and (5) shall not apply to further information and any other information provided for the purposes of a public local inquiry or hearing held under section 26(10) or (11) or section 29(6) or (7).

(7) Where a public local inquiry or hearing is to be held under section 26(10) or (11) or section 29(6) or (7) in relation to an EIA application, the Department shall, not less than 30 days before the inquiry or hearing is to be held, publish notice of it by local advertisement.

(8) Every notice published pursuant to paragraph (7) shall contain:

(a)a clear statement of the date, time and place of the inquiry or hearing;

(b)details of where and when copies of any information provided for the purposes of the inquiry or hearing may be inspected and, where practicable, copied by the public.

(9) Where a public local inquiry or hearing is to be held under section 26(10) or (11) or section 29(6) or (7) in relation to an EIA application, the Commission or, as the case may be, the person appointed by the Department shall, not less than 30 days before the inquiry or hearing is to be held, afford to any person who so requests a reasonable opportunity to inspect and, where practicable, take copies of any information provided for the purposes of the inquiry or hearing.

(10) For the purpose of paragraph (9), an opportunity is to be taken as having been afforded to a person where the person is notified of—

(a)publication on the Commission’s website, or publication on a website accessible by the person appointed by the Department, of any information provided for the purposes of the inquiry or hearing;

(b)the address of that website; and

(c)the place on the website where that information may be accessed and how it may be accessed.

Charges

22.—(1) A reasonable charge reflecting the cost of printing and distribution of an environmental statement, part of it, or further information or any other information may be made by the applicant in respect of copies made available under regulation 19(a).

(2) A body entering into consultation pursuant to regulation 10 may make a reasonable charge for the costs of making available to the applicant information in its possession.

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