The High Court today rejected an application for leave to seek judicial review of the M3 tolling scheme
An Taisce sought leave to challenge the National Roads Authority (NRA) and the Minister for Transport, Martin Cullen, under Section 18 of the Roads Act, a section which relates to procedural issues, public consultation and the formal adoption of a plan for road works.
An Taisce argued that the NRA did not follow correct procedures in formally adopting its road plan for the €900 million M3 project.
An Taisce had been aware of the issue for some time, but has so far refrained from becoming directly involved in legal challenges to road schemes.
The critical issue to the court today was that Ian Lumley had already raised the Section 18 objection at the An Bord Pleanala oral hearing in 2002. Therefore, it was much too late to seek review of the issue now. The review should have taken place within 3 months of the An Bord Pleanala approival in 2003. Costs were not awarded against An Taisce, because they had originally sought to have this hearing held ex parte, but Judge Peter Kelly insistedf last Friday the NRA and the Minister be given a chance to respond.
TaraWatch extends it sympathies to An Taisce, and continues its campaign to save Tara by making complaints to the EU, Coillte and other bodies. We are currently fundraising to have a professional archaeological report done, which will be central to these complaints.