A Kerry County Councillor claims planners are forcing people to live below ground like hobbits. Cllr Maura Healy-Rae has asked the planning authority to stop making applicants build in low ground or in hollows. Speaking at the Killarney Municipal District meeting, Cllr Healy-Rae said it should also be ensured that floor levels are at least three feet above the ground level around them. Kerry County Council said the siting of houses is critical when it comes to considering visual impact on the landscape and this means there is a preference to develop houses on lower ground. The proposal in relation to flooring should not be adopted according to planners on the grounds of integration into the landscape and added costs for house builders.