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LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT, 1994
Interpretation of Part VII .
36. —(1) In this Part, except where the context otherwise requires—
“the appropriate Minister” means, in relation to any matter, the Minister of the Government on whom functions stand conferred in respect of such matter;
“land” includes any structure, trees, plants or other flora, and any land covered with water (whether inland or coastal);
“structure” means any building, erection, structure (including a movable structure), excavation or any other thing, constructed, erected, made or placed on, in or under any land, or any part of a structure so defined, and, where the context so admits, includes the land on, in, or under which the structure is situate.
(2) In this Part, except where the context otherwise requires, a reference to a bye-law is a reference to a bye-law made under this Part.
Power to make bye-laws.
37. —(1) A local authority may, subject to subsection (8), make a bye-law for or in relation to the use, operation, protection, regulation or management of any land, services, or any other thing whatsoever provided by or under the control or management of the local authority or in relation to any matter connected therewith.
(2) (a) A local authority may, subject to this subsection and subsection (8), where in its opinion it is desirable in the interests of the common good of the local community that any activity or matter should be regulated or controlled or that any nuisance should be controlled or suppressed, make a bye-law for that purpose.
(b) A bye-law may not be made under this subsection for a purpose as respects which provision for that particular purpose is made by or under any other enactment or may be made under such enactment.
(3) The power to make bye-laws conferred by—
shall in each case be construed as if it were a power to make bye-laws under this Part and bye-laws made pursuant to any such enactment may, after the commencement of this subsection, include any thing which may be included in bye-laws made under this Part (in addition to anything which prior to such commencement could be included in bye-laws made under such enactment) and the provisions of this Part shall apply and have effect accordingly in relation to any such bye-laws made after such commencement.
(4) A bye-law may include such provisions as the local authority considers appropriate for its effective application, operation and enforcement and generally to achieve the purposes for which it is made, including—
(a) its application at all times or at specified times;
(b) its application throughout the functional area of the local authority or in any specified part of that functional area;
(c) the prohibition of any activity, matter or thing;
(d) the prescription of specified standards or requirements for specified matters or things;
(e) the exception of classes of persons or things from the bye-law either subject to or without compliance with specified conditions;
(f) the conduct of persons at specified places or in specified circumstances;
(g) the issue of licences or other authorisations by the local authority subject to or without condition and to have effect permanently or for a specified period;
(h) the payment of a fee or charge at a specified time by any person in respect of any specified matter governed by a bye-law;
(i) the specification of a fine being less than £1,000, for a contravention of a specified provision of a bye-law.
(5) (a) A local authority may, subject to the provisions of this Part, amend a bye-law.
(b) A local authority may revoke a bye-law with effect from such day as is specified in the resolution.
(6) The approval of a draft bye-law, the consideration of submissions in relation to such draft bye-law and the making, amendment or revocation of a bye-law, shall be a reserved function.
(7) The power of a local authority to make a bye-law in respect of its functional area shall include a power to make a bye-law in respect of the foreshore and of coastal waters adjoining that functional area and with the agreement of any other local authority, of the coastal waters adjoining the functional area of that other local authority.
(8) The appropriate Minister may by regulation prescribe matters or classes of matters in respect of which local authorities shall not be entitled to make a bye-law.
(9) Where for given reasons the appropriate Minister considers that a bye-law or any provision thereof is objectionable and so notifies the local authority in writing then, if the local authority does not revoke or amend the bye-law in conformity with the notice, that Minister may by order do so with effect from a specified day. Section 3 (1) shall not apply to any such order.
Procedure for making a bye-law.
38. —(1) Not less than two months before making a bye-law, the local authority shall publish a notice in one or more newspapers circulating in the area to which the proposal relates—
(a) indicating that it is proposed to make a bye-law and stating its general purpose,
(b) indicating the times at which and the period (which shall be not less than one month) during which a copy of the draft bye-law will be available for public inspection, free of charge, at such place as is specified in the notice,
(c) stating that a copy of the draft will be given to any person applying therefor on payment of such specified sum, if any, as the local authority may have fixed,
(d) stating that the local authority will consider any submissions in relation to the draft which are submitted to the authority in writing by any person before such date as may be specified, not being less than seven days after the end of the period for inspection of the draft, and
(e) where a bye-law is subject to the approval of the appropriate Minister the notice shall comply with section 39 (2) (b).
(2) The local authority shall, during the stated period, being not less than one month, keep a copy of the draft bye-law open for public inspection, free of charge, during ordinary office hours at the place specified in the notice in that behalf and shall provide a copy of the draft to any person applying therefor on payment of such reasonable sum, if any (being a sum not exceeding the reasonable cost of making the copy) as may be fixed by the local authority.
(3) The local authority shall consider any submissions made to it under subsection (1) and not withdrawn and may then make the bye-law either in accordance with the draft or subject to such changes as the local authority may, at its discretion, determine.
(4) (a) A bye-law made by a local authority, other than a bye-law to which section 39 applies, shall come into force on such date as shall be specified therein, being not less than 30 days after its making.
(b) A bye-law to which section 39 applies shall not come into force unless approved by the appropriate Minister under that section.
Certain bye-laws to be submitted to the appropriate Minister.
39. —(1) This section shall apply to a bye-law which by virtue of regulations under subsection (2) is required to be submitted to the appropriate Minister.
(2) (a) The appropriate Minister may by regulations designate any matter or classes of matters in relation to which a bye-law shall require the approval of that Minister and any such bye-law shall not come into force unless so approved.
(b) Section 38 shall, subject to the provisions of this section, apply to a bye-law to which this section applies but a notice to be published by the local authority pursuant to section 38 (1) shall state that the bye-law to be made by the local authority shall be subject to the approval of the appropriate Minister and that the authority is required to submit all submissions which it receives to that Minister together with its comments (if any) thereon.
(3) A local authority shall, as soon as may be after the making under section 38 of a bye-law to which this section applies, submit a copy to the appropriate Minister together with a copy of any submissions received by the authority and any comments which it may have on them.
(4) The appropriate Minister, having considered the documents submitted by the local authority pursuant to subsection (3), may—
(a) approve the bye-law;
(b) approve the bye-law subject to such amendments as that Minister may direct; or
(c) refuse to approve the bye-law.
(5) A bye-law approved by the appropriate Minister shall come into force (with or without amendments as the case may be) on such date as that Minister may direct.
Offences and penalties.
40. —(1) A person who contravenes a provision of a bye-law shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £1,000 or such lesser amount as may be specified in a bye-law under this Part in respect of such contravention.
(2) If the contravention of a provision of a bye-law (other than a contravention for which a lesser amount is specified in a bye-law) is continued after conviction, the person causing the contravention shall be guilty of a further offence and shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £100 per day.
(3) An authorised person may request any person who appears to be contravening or to have contravened a provision of a bye-law relating to any land, service or any other thing provided by or under the control or management of the local authority to leave such land or to refrain from any activity and may remove any person failing to comply with such request.
(4) (a) A person who obstructs or impedes or refuses to comply with a request of an authorised person acting in the exercise of the functions conferred on an authorised person by this Part shall be guilty of an offence.
(b) Where an authorised person is of the opinion that a person is committing or has committed an offence to which this section relates, the authorised person may demand the name and address of such person and if that demand is refused or the person gives a name or address which is false or misleading, that person shall be guilty of an offence.
(c) A person who is convicted of an offence under this subsection shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £1,000.
(d) Where a member of the Garda Síochána is of the opinion that a person is committing or has committed an offence to which this section relates, that member may arrest the person without warrant.
(5) A person shall not be bound to comply with a request of an authorised person under this section unless the authorised person produces, if requested by the person, evidence of appointment as an authorised person for the purpose of this Part.
(6) Where an offence under this section is committed by a body corporate and the offence is proved to have been committed with the consent or connivance of, or to be attributable to any neglect on the part of, any director, manager, secretary or other similar officer of the body or any person who was purporting to act in any such capacity, that officer or person, as well as the body, shall be guilty of the offence and shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.
(7) An offence under this section may be prosecuted by the local authority which made the relevant bye-law, by any other local authority acting on its behalf or by a member of the Garda Síochána.
(8) All fines in respect of offences under this Part shall be paid to the local authority by which the relevant bye-law was made.
(9) It shall be the duty of a local authority whenever required so to do by any Court of Justice, to produce to the court a true copy of the bye-law and to verify the copy to such court by having endorsed thereon a certificate signed by an officer of the local authority, whose official position it shall not be necessary to prove, by which the bye-law was made and the court shall receive the copy in evidence and thereupon, the copy shall, unless the contrary is shown, be sufficient evidence of the bye-law.
(10) In this section “authorised person” means a person authorised in writing by a local authority for the purpose of this section.
Fixed payment notices.
41. —(1) A bye-law may provide for a person to be served with a notice, specifying a fixed payment, not exceeding such amount as may be prescribed, in respect of a contravention of a bye-law as an alternative to a prosecution for the contravention and where the bye-law so provides it shall specify—
(a) the amount of the fixed payment, and
(b) the period within which it must be paid in order to avoid prosecution.
(2) A notice referred to in subsection (1) shall specify—
(a) the name and address of the alleged offender;
(b) in general terms the nature of the contravention alleged to have been committed;
(c) the date and place of the alleged contravention;
(d) the amount of the payment;
(e) the period within which and the place where the fixed payment may be made; and
(f) that the alleged offender is entitled to disregard the notice and defend a prosecution of the alleged contravention in court.
Publication of bye-laws.
42. —(1) A bye-law shall, as soon as may be after it has been made, or approved in the case of a bye-law to which section 39 applies, be published in Iris Oifigiúil and notice of its making or approval and of the place where copies of the bye-law may be purchased or inspected shall be published in one or more newspapers circulating in the area to which the bye-law relates.
(2) The notice referred to in subsection (1) shall include—
(a) a statement of the general purposes for which the bye-law was made,
(b) the date on which it comes into force,
(c) a statement that a copy of the bye-law may be inspected, free of charge, during ordinary office hours, at the principal office of the local authority, and
(d) a statement that a copy of the bye-law will be given to any person applying therefor on payment of a specified fee, not exceeding the reasonable cost of making such copy.
(3) The local authority shall keep a copy of the bye-law open for public inspection, free of charge, during ordinary office hours, at the principal offices of the local authority, and shall give a copy of the bye-law to any person applying therefor on payment of such reasonable sum, if any, being a sum (not exceeding the reasonable cost of making the copy) as may be fixed by the local authority.
(4) Failure to publish notice of the making of, or as appropriate, the approval of, or to make available a copy of, a bye-law shall not invalidate that bye-law.
(5) (a) Where the bye-law relates to the use, regulation or management of land provided by a local authority, a local authority shall endeavour to keep a notice that a bye-law applies displayed at or near such land.
(b) Failure to provide or to keep such notice pursuant to paragraph (a) shall not be a defence in a prosecution for contravention of a provision of a bye-law.
(6) (a) A local authority shall maintain a register of bye-laws made by it under this Part.
(b) The said register shall be available for public inspection at the principal offices of the local authority during normal office hours.
(c) The register shall include the date of the coming into operation, the area of application, and an indication of the subject matter of all bye-laws made by the authority.
Continuation in force of existing bye-laws, etc.
43. —(1) Every bye-law made by a local authority under a provision of an enactment repealed by this Act shall continue in force for a period of 3 years from the date of the coming into operation of such repeal and shall, unless it was earlier revoked by a bye-law under this Part, thereupon cease to have effect.
(2) A bye-law made under this Part may revoke a bye-law made by a local authority under any provision of any enactment repealed by this Act or a bye-law made under any other enactment which relates to matters governed by the first mentioned bye-law.
(3) For the avoidance of doubt it is hereby declared that any matter governed by a bye-law referred to in subsection (1) may be the subject of a bye-law made under this Part.
(4) The Minister may by regulations under this section in relation to any provision of any enactment which confers on a local authority a power to make bye-laws apply some or all of the provisions of this Part and any such bye-law shall be subject to such provisions as are so applied and the provision of the relevant enactment shall be construed accordingly. Nothing in this subsection shall affect the provisions of section 3 (5).