Westmeath Green Party councillor Louise Heavin says it's very important that people still have the access, and the right, to object to something they believe will not be good for their community.
Her comments follow the approval of proposals to overhaul the planning system at a meeting of the Cabinet yesterday.
The new Planning and Development Bill includes steps would limit the ability of groups such as residents associations to take judicial reviews.
She says she's hopeful though that discussions on the bill which will take place early next year will resolve the concerns.
'We have to welcome grass roots , y'know people participating in planning systems and it's really important that we have that because people in their local area know their local area very well and it's important to protect the right to do that.
And I guess that's the thing , it's a draft planning bill, it's going to go to committee stage.
There will be an opportunity for people to put in amendments, there'll be an opportunity for the committee, which is chaired by one of our own Green Party TD's Stephen Mathews , to invite in environmental NGO's and people who may have concerns with some aspects of the bill.'