The Planning and Development Regulations 2001-2010 have set out the procedures to be followed in respect of submissions/observations in relation to planning applications; these comments may be positive or negative. An appeal of a decision by a planning authority can only be made by a third party to An Bord Pleanala, where a valid submission has been received, except in very limited circumstances by an adjoining landowner who must apply for leave to appeal. Anyone making a written comment on an application is informed of the council’s decision and of the right to appeal to An Bord Pleanala.
Making a valid submission/observation
To ensure your comments are taken into consideration your submission/observation must comply with the following:
- Statutory fee of €20 must be paid. This fee can be made using debit or credit card over the phone or in person; by cheque/postal/money orders made payable to Wicklow County Council; by cash at the Customer Care Hub in County Buildings.
IMPORTANT: Submissions will not be validated until payment has been received. If no fee is received the submission will not be considered and shall be returned as invalid
- Any submission/observation received should state the name of the person or body making the submission and must indicate the address to which any correspondence relating to the application should be sent. It should also include the Planning Reference Number, which is available on our website or by calling the Planning Department. Please ensure that these details are legible.
- In the case of a submission/observation with multiple signatories, an acknowledgement will be sent to one signatory only, the address of which should be indicated on the submission/observation.
- Submissions/observations, including the fee of €20, must be made within five weeks beginning on the date of receipt of the planning application. The five-week period commences on the day that a planning application is received. If the last day of this five-week period falls on Saturday, Sunday or a Public Holiday, submissions/observations can be accepted on the next working day. Over the Christmas holiday period, the nine days from 24 December to 1 January are disregarded and these nine days are added on to the five-week period within which you must make your submission. All valid submissions received by the Planning Authority is made available for public inspection both in the hard copy file and on the Council's website.
- Submissions/observations can be posted to the Planning Department, Wicklow County Council, County Buildings, Wicklow Town or by email to email@example.com. Submissions/observations must be received by close of business at 5pm on the closing date, unless the closing date falls on a weekend or bank holiday then the next working day (Monday or Tuesday, whichever applies)
- You can only comment on planning and development issues. Any issues that do not meet the guidelines will not be considered. The Planning Authority may only consider objections relating to planning issues and not those based on personal dislikes, grievances or opinions.
Should your submission/observation comply with the above, it is acknowledged by the planning department. This acknowledgement is an important document and will be required if you wish to appeal the decision of the planning authority.
If the submission/observation does not comply, it is returned with the attached monies.
There is no mechanism in the regulations for the withdrawal of a submission/observation. You may however, make a further addition to your submission advising the planning authority to disregard your original submission. This must be done as soon as possible. Both letters then remain on the file.
The planning process is an open and public one. In that context, your submissions/observations are placed on a public file with all other documents submitted. This information may also be placed on Wicklow County Council’s website.
Persons making a submission/observation on a planning application should be aware that comments involving allegations of any kind against a named or otherwise identifiable person or organisation may be viewed as defamatory by the subject of the comments. Persons may be sued directly for any defamatory allegations in any submission/observation and should avoid making such allegations. Any submission/observation made to the Planning Authority is made available for public inspection both in the hard copy file and on the Council's website. In the event of any potentially defamatory allegation giving rise to legal action against it, the Planning Authority may seek indemnity from the person making the allegation.