Public participation is the involvement of citizens, society and non-governmental organisations in the policy-making process. The purpose of public participation is to ensure that decisions taken by public administration are in line with the needs of the public, are timely explained and understandable to those to whom they apply. Public participation has a number of general benefits, focusing on improving the quality of regulation, identifying the actual problem, evaluating possible alternatives, detecting possible “side effects” in good time, and ensuring that the solutions are effective.
Members of the public may express their views on development planning documents, draft legal acts at the initial stage of their development, and in other phases when societal issues are being addressed. Any member of the public concerned or interested in the matter may give his or her opinion. Each member of the public shall be entitled to receive feedback on his/her proposal.
Public participation shall be carried out proactively by public authorities looking for the most effective ways of involving and informing the public, particularly those sections of the public, which are affected or are likely to be affected by the proposed activity.
Public participation is governed by the: