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Waitakere a top performer in RMA survey

Waitakere a top performer in RMA survey

If you want to get something approved under the Resource Management Act - Waitakere City is one of the best places in the country to do it.

According to the latest RMA performance ratings issued by the Ministry for the Environment, Waitakere City processes more resource consent applications before the statutory deadline than other councils in the wider Auckland region.

Figures for last year show Waitakere processed 100% of notified land use applications within statutory time limits, compared to 74% in Auckland City, 64% in North Shore City, 57% in Papakura District, 50% in Franklin District, 48% in Manukau City, and 44% in Rodney District.

Nationwide, just 69% of applications were processed on time.

Waitakere City also processed 97% of its non-notified land use and 96% of its non-notified subdivision applications within the required timeframe – out-performing all its immediate neighbours.

Within the Auckland region, Waitakere notified the least number of applications. The percentage in Waitakere was just 0.6%. The frequency in the rest of the region varied from 1% in Auckland and North Shore to 5.9% in Rodney.

Waitakere processed more than 1500 resource consents in the 2001/02 year – about one for every 120 people living in the City. On a per capita basis, Waitakere stands in the middle of the region – processing about double the amount of Manukau and half the amount of Rodney.

Chair of the Council’s Finance and Operational Performance Committee, Councillor Janet Clews, is proud of Waitakere’s standing in the survey.

“It is pleasing to see the very high level of customer service that we achieved several years ago has been maintained. We make a concerted effort to reach 100% compliance in all categories of consent. And while this is rarely possible to achieve, we have come very close for the last few years,” she says.

“The very small number of resource consents that we notify is also testament to our pre-application process that weeds out the poor proposals and to our District Plan, which has made the rules very clear. That makes the resource consent process as painless as possible for as many people as possible.”

Minister for the Environment, Marian Hobbs, says the survey results are used to highlight and monitor the use of best practice by local authorities and the latest statistics show that practice under the RMA continues to improve.

“Councils are taking positive steps in improving practice – and with assistance from the Ministry for the Environment, I expect this trend to continue.”

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