Planning and Development Act, 2000

Prosecution of offences.

157.—(1) Subject to section 149 , summary proceedings for an offence under this Act may be brought and prosecuted by a planning authority whether or not the offence is committed in the authority's functional area.

(2) Notwithstanding section 10 (4) of the Petty Sessions (Ireland) Act, 1851 , and subject to subsection (3) of this section, summary proceedings may be commenced—

(a) at any time within 6 months from the date on which the offence was committed, or

(b) at any time within 6 months from the date on which evidence sufficient, in the opinion of the person by whom the proceedings are initiated, to justify proceedings comes to that person's knowledge,

whichever is the later.

(3) For the purposes of this section, a certificate signed by or on behalf of the person initiating the proceedings as to the date or dates on which evidence described in subsection (2)(b) came to his or her knowledge shall be evidence of the date or dates and in any legal proceedings a document purporting to be a certificate under this section and to be so signed shall be deemed to be so signed and shall be admitted as evidence without proof of the signature of the person purporting to sign the certificate, unless the contrary is shown.

(4) (a) No warning letter or enforcement notice shall issue and no proceedings for an offence under this Part shall commence—

(i) in respect of a development where no permission has been granted, after seven years from the date of the commencement of the development;

(ii) in respect of a development for which permission has been granted under Part III, after seven years beginning on the expiration, as respects the permission authorising the development, of the appropriate period within the meaning of section 40 or, as the case may be, of the period as extended under section 42 .

(b) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), proceedings may be commenced at any time in respect of any condition concerning the use of land to which the permission is subject.

(c) It shall be presumed until the contrary is proved that proceedings were commenced within the appropriate period.

(5) Proceedings for other offences under this Act shall not be initiated later than 7 years from the date on which the offence concerned was alleged to have been committed.