In the first instance, it is the municipality that determines how land should be used so long as such use falls within the framework set forth by national policy. Through its role as specialist authority in the fields of agriculture, environmental protection, health and civil security, the County Governor ensures that national interests are addressed. In addition, it must ensure that municipal decisions in matters of planning and construction comply with the applicable legislation.
National guidelines must be followed
The Storting and the government create guidelines and frameworks which municipalities will observe in their land management. The County Governor has a responsibility to ensure that municipalities address national interests in relation to environmental protection, agriculture, health and civil security. We must also ensure that the interests of children and young people are taken into account in all planning. If municipal land management runs contrary to national interests, the County Governor must intervene.
The County Governor may intervene by giving notice of or actually filing an objection to land plans, or by appealing decisions in building matters (decisions on exemptions) which run in breach of the land plan. If the municipality decides not to uphold the objection, the case will proceed to mediation between the parties. Should such mediation prove fruitless, the municipality may request that the case be submitted to the Ministry of Climate and Environment for a final ruling.
The County Governor is the administrative appeals body
Anyone affected by a municipal decision concerning development plans and construction matters or by a decision made under the Land Act, the Concessions Act or the Allodial Rights Act may appeal to the County Governor. The County Governor also handles appeals under the Cadastre Act, the Property Unit Ownership Act, the Roads Act, the Ground Lease Act and the Act regarding a Municipal Right of Pre-emption. In addition, the County Governor is the administrative appeals body in cases where a private property is made subject to a compulsory purchase order under the Planning and Building Act (expropriation). This type of appeal is first handled by the municipality. If the municipality does not uphold the appeal, the appeal is sent to the County Governor for a final ruling.