Draft legislation unveiled on illegal buildings in forests

Draft legislation unveiled on illegal buildings in forests

The Environment Ministry presented a draft law on Thursday that could serve as a first step toward the legalization of illegal constructions in forest areas.

The draft concerns “residential clusters,” or groups of at least 50 illegal constructions spanning an area of 2.5 hectares.

The draft legislation stipulates that individual owners of constructions within these residential clusters can pay a fine to delay demolitions and prosecution for 25 or 40 years – essentially making it a foregone conclusion that illegal structures will remain in public forests for years to come.

Critics say it could ultimately lead to the legalization of these structures.

The draft legislation will be publicly debated until January 8, during which time the Hellenic Cadaster will conduct inspections to ascertain which areas can be categorized as residential clusters.

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