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LGNZ Keen To Participate In Timely RMA Reform

MEDIA RELEASE

Local Government New Zealand keen to participate in timely reform of the Resource Management Act

For immediate release on 12 May 2004

“The reform of the Resource Management Act announced by the Government is timely and prudent,” Local Government New Zealand President Basil Morrison said today.

“Local government has the role as primary decision maker within the Act and this is appropriate – the things that are important to local communities are able to be heard. However, the need to balance participation, the needs of the nation, and the need to reduce compliance costs has been challenging. Thirteen years on, local authorities have learnt a lot and improved their practice. Local authorities currently process over 50,000 resources consents a year - everything from the neighbour’s garage to complex multi-million dollar infrastructure developments.

“We welcome the chance to participate. Our focus will be on streamlining processes without compromising good environmental outcomes or sacrificing public participation. We agree that with major infrastructure projects, more guidance is needed to find the right balance between local and national interests.

We look forward to consulting our members to work with the Government on this reform. We know that it will not address every concern expressed about the Act by local authorities. However, it will go some way to improving practice, simplifying procedures and reducing costs - benefits which will flow on to the wider community, “said Mr Morrison.

Ends

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