After more than a year and a half from the legal deadline for the adoption of management plans for National Parks, which are the most important planning document after special purpose spatial plans, on the basis of which these protected areas are managed, the Public Enterprise for National Parks invites the public to a “public discussion ” in an inappropriate and illegal manner by publishing material on their website on Friday, May 20, and in the holiday issue of the daily newspaper Dan on Saturday, May 21, 2022.
Referring to the Law on National Parks, which defines the obligation to include the public in the process of adopting Management Plans for National Parks, this company informs the public that “public hearings” will be held at certain times, as follows:
Each park is discussed individually in a single appointment, on the 3rd working day after the publication of the material for Lovćen NP, on the 4th working day after the publication of the material for the Skadar Lake NP, and on the 10th, 11th and 12th working days from publication of materials for NP Biogradska gora, NP Prokletije and NP Durmitor, without the possibility of submitting comments and opinions in writing. The 5 management plans contain a total of 402 pages, whereby this type of organization inappropriately and illegally limits the participation of the public in the discussion related to the adoption of management plans.
The Law on National Parks defines the obligation of public participation in such a way that it is obliged to inform interested authorities, organizations and the interested public about the start of the preparation of the management plan, by publishing a notice in at least one printed media. The notification should contain information on the method, deadline and place of public inspection, as well as the method and deadline for submitting comments and opinions. In the specific case, the invitation was published in the holiday issue of the newspaper, the public was denied to have the opportunity to send objections in writing, and the public discussion lasted between 3 and 12 days.
PE for national parks, apart from being unable to provide quality protection of protected areas, by inappropriate and ultimately illegal organization of a public discussion, which is essentially not, proves that it ignores the fact that the protection, improvement and development of national parks is an activity of public interest, and that it is the right of citizens to know how and in what manner it is planned to manage protected areas in the next five years and to participate in that process. given plans for the period from 2021 to 2025, even though 2021 has already passed long ago and 2022 is halfway through.