The National Land Service (NŽT) will transfer the functions of state control of land use, state supervision of territorial planning documents – land management schemes and rural development land management projects to the State Spatial Planning and Construction Inspectorate (VTPSI).
In order to smoothly implement from 2024 January 1 changes in legal regulation coming into effect, related to the Land Law of the Republic of Lithuania no. I-446 Amendment Act No. According to amendments to XIV-1311 and other related laws, the NŽT intensively cooperates with the VTPSI management regarding the transfer of new functions.
State control of land use is the control of the activities of land owners or users, which aims to ensure the proper use of land and legal protection, as well as to identify violations of legal acts and, in accordance with competence, to apply the sanctions provided for by law to violators. During the state control of land use, it is checked whether the landowners and other land users use the land in accordance with the main purpose and method of use of the land plot, whether the servitudes established for the land plot are observed, whether the soil is protected during economic or other activities, other private or state land is not occupied, the established boundaries of land plots, boundary markers and geodetic points that are not destroyed (undamaged), whether land plot owners and other users take the necessary measures to restore destroyed or damaged boundary markers after they have been warned in writing to do so, as well as checking compliance with contracts, according to which state plots of land are leased.
Land use inspections are scheduled and unscheduled. Planned inspections are carried out according to a pre-approved list of planned land use inspections expected to be carried out in the current year, and unscheduled inspections are carried out based on requests, complaints or reports of possible land use violations by individuals, or upon information and reasonable suspicions of land use violations, as well as checking whether previously established violations of the land use procedure have been removed.
Maintenance of territorial planning documents
Another function – state supervision of territorial planning documents – land management schemes and rural development land management projects is carried out in accordance with the Law on State Supervision of Territorial Planning and Construction of the Republic of Lithuania (hereinafter – the Law) and other legal acts.
State supervision of territorial planning documents (land management schemes and rural development land management projects) includes:
territorial planning process procedures and administrative decisions related to territorial planning, including decisions that, without carrying out the territorial planning process, establish new, change or cancel existing requirements for the management, use or protection of the territory, change or cancel territorial planning documents (parts thereof), compliance with regulations governing territorial planning verification of legal acts; verification of the compliance of territorial planning document decisions with legal acts regulating territorial planning; provision of mandatory instructions to provide the necessary information, documents, to eliminate violations of legal acts regulating territorial planning identified during inspections; examination of requests and complaints of individuals related to the territorial planning process; other actions of territorial planning state supervision authorities related to the state supervision of territorial planning specified in the Law and other legal acts. It should also be noted that the land management scheme is a land management planning document, which according to the type of territorial planning documents can be at the state, municipal and local level and is classified as a special territorial planning document. The tasks of land management schemes can be: divide the planned territory into zones according to the directions of agricultural activity; determine the territories suitable for agricultural activities; identify unfavorable areas for farming; determine the territories where it is appropriate to plant the land with forest; to detail or concretize the natural framework and to establish restrictions on economic activity related to the application of special land use conditions and the implementation of general plan decisions; predict the need for construction and reconstruction of melioration systems; provide for the placement and addition of the network of local roads; to plan the layout and development of farm land holdings.
The rural development land management project, as a land management document for special area planning at the local level, is prepared with the aim of comprehensively planning the change in the composition of land areas, forest planting, other activities related to agriculture, and forming land holdings of agricultural and alternative activity subjects in non-urbanized and non-urbanized areas of rural residential areas. The purposes of this document may be: planting a forest on non-forest land; to reorganize farm land holdings; to select the site of the farmer’s homestead and (or) the construction site of buildings necessary for agricultural activities and to plan agricultural and rural development.
What land management issues will citizens have to contact VTPSI?
Starting from the new year, organizers of land management schemes and rural development land management projects, institutions preparing and issuing territory planning conditions, project developers, institutions coordinating and approving projects, and other persons participating in the process of preparing the aforementioned projects will have to apply to VTPSI. VTPSI will perform the state supervision of territorial planning of land management schemes and rural development land management projects.
It should be mentioned that until now the structural unit of the NŽT, which is responsible for the state supervision of land management planning documents, checked about 1,000 rural development land management projects per year.
Also, the transfer of functions will affect many interested in land management, which are also related to the state control of land use. Requests to conduct a land use inspection, complaints about entrances, blocking of roads, possible arbitrary occupation or arbitrary use of land, water bodies, illegal construction of fences or other structures and other possible violations of land use from 2024. January 1 residents will no longer have to address the NŽT, but VTPSI. Investigations of administrative offenses will be carried out and fines for violations of the land use procedure will also be imposed by VTPSI.
Until now, the NŽT performed an average of about 10,000 scheduled and unscheduled inspections of land use per year.