Amendments of a technical nature to the main transport statutes
The Act on the Transport System and Highways and certain other related acts will be amended. With the amendments the statutes will be specified and updated. This is a so-called corrective package that includes amendments which are mainly of a technical nature and involve references to the amended statutes.
On 30 December 2019, the President of the Republic approved the Act on the Transport System and Highways as well as the related legislative amendments. The amendments will enter into force on 1 January 2020, except for those on the Act on the Transport System and Highways and the Railways Act that will enter into force on 1 February 2020.
As a result of the legislative amendments, public notices on railway and highway plans will be published primarily on the transport authorities' website. The contents of the public notices must also be communicated directly to the owners and holders of properties that are directly affected by the provisions specified in the Act.
The Act on Transport Services restores jurisdiction to the Government of Åland and the State Department of Åland. The authority to issue international transport licences will be given to the Transport and Communications Agency, Traficom. It will also be responsible for the national coordination and cooperation of matters relating to private roads and for the allocation of public passenger transport and private road subsidies among the areas of the economic, transport and environmental centres.
The Act on the Transfer of Vehicles was entirely resubmitted. As a rule, the contents of the Act and the responsibilities of the authorities remain unchanged but the wording will be clarified. At the same time, the amendments resulting from the repeal (from 1 January 2020) of the old Act on Public Notifications will be implemented.
The Act on Private Roads and the Courts Act were amended to allow the Engineers of a District Court operating as a Land Court to take part in the district court's preparation and resolution of matters concerning the objection of a decision by a private road maintenance association.
When the Acts were adopted, Parliament required that the Government without delay assess and review the provisions on claims for a revised decision and right of appeal regarding driving ban decisions. Parliament's statement will be resumed in connection with the amendment of the Road Traffic Act to be adopted in spring 2020.
The reasons for the legislative amendments are the expiry of the regional government reform, which included some of the technical changes, and the differences between the dates of entry into force of the Acts adopted during the previous parliamentary term, which did not allow the legislative references to be taken into account at the time.
Silja Ruokola, Director of Legal Affairs, tel. +358 295 34 2367