No easy route for planning extensions

A north Longford councillor says it is unfair that people who seek an extension time on their planning application should have to go through the septic tank process once more.

A north Longford councillor says it is unfair that people who seek an extension time on their planning application should have to go through the septic tank process once more.

Cllr John Duffy said people who had initially fulfilled their planning application requirements and received planning permission, but who are now seeking an extension have to comply with the updated regulations in relation to septic tanks.

In response, the council said their hands were tied and that they were merely adhering to planning law.

Cllr Duffy, speaking at the recent county council meeting, said, “These are planning permissions that had been granted, and it seems unfair that since the goalposts were moved as regards septic tanks and the requirements that it’s now refused.

“If someone had got planning permission and done their trial holes and everything else, and it was passed, they now have to do the whole lot again to get an extension and some have been refused on the basis of that.

“Could we not have got around that by just extending the planning permissions on the basis that they got it under the guidelines that were there when they applied at first?

“It’s very annoying for some people – basically because they hadn’t got the money to build in the last couple of years.”

Frank Sheridan, director of services for planning and building control, said, “It’s planning law – it’s not optional for the local authority.

“The law came in in 2010, and it requires us to do this.

“Prior to that, people who didn’t have any work completed or hadn’t substantially completed the planning application, it would have gone void; they would have lost it.

“This gives people an option to come back in and resubmit it. There’s nothing we can do, it’s just the law.”