Flemish High Enforcement Council for the Environment
The Flemish High Council of Environmental Enforcement (VHRM) was created by the Flemish act of 21 December 2007, published in the Belgian Official Journal of 29 February 2008. It effectively started its work on the 1st of May 2009.
In 2014, the VHRM received additional competences and was reformed into the Flemish High Enforcement Council for the Environment. Not only is the VHRM now responsible for the environmental enforcement policy, but also for the enforcement policy regarding to spatial and land use planning. Besides the coordination of the enforcement policy and supporting the Flemish Parliament and the Flemish Government in this matter, the VHRM has received a number of specific tasks:
the organisation of systematic consultation with all the authorities (public ministry, administrative agencies etc.) competent in the field of the enforcement of the environmental legislation and the enforcement of the provisions of the Flemish Zoning Code (spatial and land use planning);
advise the Flemish Government and the Flemish Parliament on all matters relating to the enforcement of the Flemish environmental law and the enforcement of the provisions of the Flemish Zoning Code;
determine the priorities for the enforcement of environmental law and the enforcement of the provisions of the Flemish Zoning Code on its own initiative or on the request of the Flemish Parliament or the Flemish Government;
to act as a motor for closing enforcement protocols (in which it could for example be specified which kind of authorities will execute specific control tasks in particular circumstances) between the various actors involved;
the layout of the five-year environmental enforcement programme and the layout of the five-year spatial and land use planning enforcement programme (these programmes will determine inter alia the priorities of the enforcement policy that needs to be carried out in the next five years) ; and
the format and publication of the annual environment enforcement report and the annual spatial and land use planning enforcement report (These reports contain the results of the implementation of the enforcement policy during the past year. The English version of the previous Environmental Enforcement Report can be downloaded below);
Environmental Enforcement Reports: 2013 (Five years of Environmental Enforcement Act (2009-2013), 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009.
Priority Note (translated by the Translation Service of the Federal Police - Summer 2013)