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The Environmental Assessment of Plans and Programmes (Scotland) Regulations 2004

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Consultation procedures

18.—(1) The provisions of this regulation apply to every environmental report that has been prepared in accordance with regulation 16 and the plan or programme to which it relates (“the relevant documents”).

(2) As soon as reasonably practicable, and in any event within 14 days of their preparation, the responsible authority shall send a copy of the relevant documents to the consultation authorities and invite them to express their opinion on the relevant documents within such period as it may specify.

(3) The responsible authority shall also–

(a)within 14 days of the preparation of the relevant documents, publish in accordance with paragraph (5), or secure the publication of, a notice–

(i)stating the title of the plan or programme;

(ii)stating the address (which may include a website) at which a copy of the relevant documents may be inspected or from which a copy may be obtained;

(iii)inviting expressions of opinion on the relevant documents; and

(iv)stating the address to which, and the period within which, opinions must be sent;

(b)keep a copy of the relevant documents available at the authority’s principal office for inspection by the public at all reasonable times and free of charge; and

(c)publish a copy of the relevant documents on the authority’s website.

(4) The periods referred to in paragraphs (2) and (3)(a)(iv) must be of such length as will ensure that those to whom the invitation is extended are given an early and effective opportunity to express their opinion on the relevant documents.

(5) Publication of a notice under paragraph (3)(a) shall be by such means (including publication in at least one newspaper circulating in the responsible authority’s area) as will ensure that the contents of the notice are likely to come to the attention of the public affected by, or likely to be affected by, or having an interest in, the draft plan or the programme.

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