Once ANCA has considered a planning application referred to ANCA under the 2019 Act, a number of decisions are open to ANCA.
First, ANCA may direct the Planning Authority to refuse permission for the proposal in question. ANCA will issue this direction if ANCA is satisfied that permission should not be granted for the development for the reason that inadequate provision has been made in the application (or further information) to deal with the noise problem that would arise from the carrying out of the development as proposed.
If ANCA directs the Planning Authority to refuse permission on noise grounds, the Planning Authority must refuse permission for the proposal.
Alternatively, ANCA may make a regulatory decision to the effect that permission for the proposal may be granted, although this decision is solely from a noise perspective. The Planning Authority still needs to consider all other aspects and potential impacts of the proposal as it would any other planning application. The Planning Authority remains entitled to refuse permission based on one, or a number of, those factors.
If ANCA does decide that permission may be granted, it will provide a draft regulatory decision on its website. The draft regulatory decision will set out:
- The noise mitigation measures or operating restrictions (if any), or combination thereof, that it proposes to direct the planning authority to include as conditions of the planning authority’s decision (if any) to grant permission for the development; or
- That no such conditions are required to be included in the planning authority’s decision (if any) to grant permission for the development.
There will then be a 14 week period for public submissions on ANCA's draft regulatory decision. ANCA will consider those submissions, then make a final regulatory decision on the application. ANCA may adopt the draft regulatory decision in full, or else make amendments, when it makes the final regulatory decision.
The Planning Authority must incorporate ANCA's regulatory decision into the final planning decision that it makes on the application as a whole. Any person who makes submissions on ANCA's draft regulatory decision will then have an opportunity to appeal the entire planning decision, including ANCA's regulatory decision, to An Bord Pleanála.