Dáil Éireann - Volume 543 - 06 November, 2001
Written Answers. - Compulsory Purchase Orders.
Mrs. Owen Mrs. Owen
550. Mrs. Owen asked the Minister for the Environment and Local Government the plans he has to update the compulsory purchase order system, particularly in relation to the price paid to a person whose land is being compulsorily purchased; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [26948/01]
Mr. Dempsey Mr. Dempsey
Minister for the Environment and Local Government (Mr. Dempsey): The compulsory acquisition of land for public purposes, on the basis of fair compensation to landowners, has operated widely in Ireland for many years and is supported by the Constitution and a range of legislative proposals which have been regularly upheld by the courts. It is a basic principle within this process that landowners must get fair compensation and that it should be paid as quickly as possible.
Compensation is comprised of a number of elements. The fundamental point of reference is the market value of the land at the time notice to treat is served. Provision is also made for disturbance, severance and injurious affection; these in certain circumstances would exceed the land value element of the total compensation package. Where a dispute arises about compensation the matter is referable to an independent arbitrator.
The Planning and Development Act, 2000, provided for the transfer of the Minister's functions to An Bórd Pleanála and brings about other changes designed to streamline the compulsory purchase order process. These include provision for less formal oral hearings in place of the more formal public local inquiries, the confirmation of compulsory purchase orders by local authorities themselves where there are no objections, time limits on submitting compulsory purchase orders to the board for confirmation, an 18 week objective for making decisions on compulsory purchase orders and shortening the period within which local authorities must serve notice to treat to purchase the land from three years to 18 months. I am satisfied that these changes will result in a more effective CPO system.
Dáil Éireann 543 Written Answers. Compulsory Purchase Orders.