1 - Economic Development and Planning Policy

Minutes of Strategic Policy Committee 1 (Economic Development & Planning Policy) of Sligo County Council held at 3.00 p.m. on Thursday the 29th September, 2005 in the Training Room, Riverside, Sligo


MEMBERS PRESENT:

  • Councillor T. McLoughlin,
  • Councillor P. Barry,
  • Councillor A Colleary ,
  • Councillor D. Healy McGowan,
  • Councillor S.Kilgannon,
  • Councillor S. Mac Manus,
  • Councillor J Devins
  • G Healy, Chamber of Commerce
  • N. O’ Driscoll, Ballisodare Community Council
  • Phil Tuohy, Aclare Development Association
  • Michael Keenan, Keenan Construction Ltd

OFFICIALS PRESENT:

  • P. Forkan, Director of Services
  • D. Clarke, Director of Services
  • B. Carolan, Senior Planner
  • F. Moylan, Senior Executive Planner
  • F. O’Driscoll, Senior Executive Engineer
  • M. Davidescu, Executive Planner
  • P. Flanagan, Senior Engineer
  • D. Breen, Senior Executive Officer
  • M Hegarty, Administrative Officer
  • J McNamara, Administrative Officer
  • C Conmy, GIS Officer
  • D Finnegan, Clerical Officer
  • S Quigley, Clerical Officer

CHAIRPERSON:

  • The Chairperson, Cllr. T McLoughlin, presided.

A vote of sympathy was extended by the Chairperson on behalf of the SPC1 Committee to Frank Moylan on the death of his mother.

1.  TO CONFIRM THE MINUTES OF THE SPC1 MEETING HELD ON THE 2ND JUNE 2005.

Proposed: Cllr. Kilgallon
Seconded: Cllr. Barry

AND AGREED:

“That the minutes of the Strategic Policy Committee No. 1 Meeting held on the 2nd June 2005 be confirmed”.

2. MATTERS ARISING: 

No matters were raised under this heading

3 & 7 UPDATE OF COUNTY DEVELOPMENT PLAN

M. Davidescu updated the members on the progress made on the County Development Plan 2005-2011, she stated it was currently being printed and should be ready by mid October 2005.  The Ballymote Draft Local Area Plan 2005-2011 proposed amendments went on display in Ballymote and it was hoped that the plan would be adopted for the December ordinary meeting.  Ms. Davidescu said that work was ongoing on the Tubbercurry Local Area Plan 2006-2012 and it was hoped that a draft plan would be ready for submission to Council members by mid January 2006.  Finally, Ms Davidescu informed the members that mini plans were being prepared for Carney, Coolaney and Dromore West – in groups of three -for incorporation into the County Development plan as a single variation. 

4. BURIAL GROUND POLICY

D. Clarke informed the members that a recent review was undertaken on the Council’s current role in the whole area of burial grounds in County Sligo. 

M. Hegarty provided the members with an overview of the policy which included devising a priority listing for burial ground extensions and developing a procedure to deal with dangerous structures.  She added that the policy also set out the future role for the Council and the Community thereby trying to bring a more structured approach to the management and upkeep of burial grounds.

Cllr McManus asked for clarification regarding the future role of Burial Ground Committees and expressed reservations as to the suitability of the green lawn effect proposal.  In reply, Ms. Clarke stated that the community could play a more active part in the upkeep of their burial grounds, and added that the green lawn effect had been very effective in other counties and was an option for further consideration in County Sligo.  Cllr. Barry highlighted to members the serious space shortage in Ahamlish burial ground in Grange and asked that CPO’s be considered in the policy as a means of acquiring land and this was noted by Ms. Hegarty.  Ms. Tuohy briefed the members of the voluntary efforts of the local people in Aclare, highlighting the commitment that groups have to conserving their local burial ground.  It was agreed that this policy should be presented to the council for members’ approval subject to minor amendments.

5  RURAL HOUSING POLICY
6  PANEL OF CONSULTANTS TO CARRY OUT SITE SUITABILITY ASSESSMENTS
9  RURAL HOUSING POLICY REPORT FOR CIRCULATION

F. Moylan presented a synopsis of the Rural Housing Policy Guidelines for the SPC members and said that Sligo County Council’s rural planning policy recognises the positive and negative aspects associated with one off housing.  He added that this policy was an appropriate response to achieving a balanced and socially equitable approach to rural housing in the county.

Cllr. Devins sought clarification on the guidelines regarding visually vulnerable scenic routes and also the method used for determining a need.  In reply Mr. Moylan stated that extra care was needed in the design in these locations and Mr. Carolan added that judgements made on need were carried out in a fair and balanced manner. 

Mr. Healy commented that there were a lot of inconsistencies in the planning process and asked how the vital link to an area was established.  In reply, Mr. Carolan stated that the planners try to deal with everyone the same and to manage this process and ensure that policies are delivered effectively.  He added that it was fair to ask applicants to establish vital link and said that planners worked in co-operation with Councillors in this area.

It was agreed at the meeting that this document would be produced in booklet form for circulation to the general public.  Cllr. Collery asked that all the agents and Councillors be circulated with the policy first and this was agreed by the members.

Mr. Forkan welcomed the input of the members and stated that it appeared that there was still a need for further clarification and discussion in the whole area of rural housing especially with the community. The Chairperson recommended that this item be kept on the agenda for future meetings and this was agreed by the members.

Finally, Mr. Moylan informed the members that the planning office had prepared an approved list of 17 agents for on site suitability assessments.  He said that treatment units needed to be accepted by Sanitary/Environmental Services sections and added that he hoped that these 17 competent agents would cater for the demand in the county.

8. SLIGO DOCKLANDS: MASTER PLANNING UPDATE

B. Carolan informed the members that a team had been formed to examine the future planning requirements of the Sligo Docklands.  He presented a map to members of the proposed regeneration plan for the area but added that it was still a work in progress document.  He indicated that there was no intention to shut down the Harbour but that adaptations were needed.  He said that the Dept of the Marine’s financial support was needed, as in order to retain the harbour, funding was needed to maintain it.  It was agreed that a copy of this plan would be circulated to the members for further consideration.

Mr. Forkan added that this document was a first attempt at putting ideas down on paper and welcomed the future input of members.

The meeting concluded at 5.00pm


No date for the next meeting was fixed.


Meeting Date 29/09/2005