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LGNZ welcomes RMA survey results

MEDIA RELEASE

Local Government New Zealand welcomes RMA survey results

For immediate release on 13 April 2005

A recent survey of councils on the Resource Management Act, undertaken by the Ministry for the Environment, has highlighted an improvement in the time it is taking councils to process resource consents.

“The majority of resource consents, around 77 percent, are being processed by councils within the given statutory time limits. This is quite remarkable given the increase in council workloads and local authorities are processing 11.5 percent more consents than the previous year,” said Basil Morrison, President of Local Government New Zealand.

“Factors that we do have to take into account when we are looking at timeframes are the different circumstances surrounding each consent application and the varying workloads between each council. One council may have two people processing thirty applications while another council may have three people working on ten consents at any given time, any of these issues may hold up the process and impact on the timeframe. Applicants can also assist the process by ensuring their applications are filled out correctly.”

“Overall, the RMA survey showed that council processes are working well, we are seeing an increase in the number of pre-hearing meetings for notified consents and fewer consents being appealed to the Environment Court,” said Mr Morrison.

The Resource Management Act survey of all 86 councils looked at six key aspects of Resource Management Act process, numbers and types of resource consents processed; the time taken to process consents; charges to applicants; Maori participation in RMA processes; monitoring, compliance and enforcement; and good practice.

Ends

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