Donegal SF Councillor Mick Quinn has successfully secured the agreement of all councillors at Mondays meeting Of Donegal County Council for his motion which will lead to a change in the County Development Plan.
Speaking after the meeting Quinn said: The whole issue of erection of masts is very emotive and the concerns of our communities are paramount.
A number of masts have been granted planning permission by the council in recent times and there is a serious concern in some communities about what they see as the covert nature off the planning process in regards to the erection of telecommunication masts. It is vital that communities have complete confidence in both the planning process and their elected representatives.
I fully believe that by bringing this motion before the council and having it adopted by the members and implemented that it will go a long way towards restoring the communities’ confidence in both the planning process and the elected members.
The motion itself will ensure that all future applications for planning permission for telecommunication masts must be advertised in a local paper and must include all technical data regarding the mast with the application.
Applicants for planning permission will also have to hold a pre-application public information meeting and engage with the local community in order to address their concerns.
Quinn continued “ I was stunned by the prevarication and complete arrogance of the Council Planning Department who suggested that as a review of the County Development Plan is due to commence in July next year the issues raised by me can be considered then. The council also claimed that the present policy is ‘Robust enough’ however I do not believe that many people in Ramelton would agree with this claim.
In conclusion Quinn said: “Unfortunately the implementation of this motion comes too late for some communities, but we can at least ensure that other communities in Donegal will be more informed and better prepared to deal with the telecommunication masts issue in the future”.