Scottish Executive communities minister Malcolm Chisholm has enraged environmentalists revealing plans to remove the right to object to schemes deemed of 'national importance'.
Instead ministers would have to win approval from parliament.
The cost of the new StirlingAlloa-Kincardine railway line has soared from £37M to £60M. The discovery of old mineworkings and large compensation claims from lineside property owners has pushed up costs and delayed the start of works by a year.
The Scottish Executive says trains will not run until the end of 2006.