Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Society to appeal controversial decision

Sunday April 24

Society to appeal controversial decision to Environment Court

The Waitakere Ranges Protection Society is to appeal a controversial decision by the Waitakere City Council that allows small-lot subdivision in the foothills of the Waitakere Ranges to the Environment Court.

Announcing the decision, Society President John Edgar said that the council’s decision on the Duncan application would adversely affect the outstanding landscape values of the area and is further proof that better measures are needed to protect the area from inappropriate development.

“This decision was carried on a split vote by just two councillors and was against the clear advice of council officers,” said Mr Edgar (*see attached minutes).

The Duncan application sought to subdivide a 2.7 hectare block into three lots, all less than one hectare, in spite of the current property being less than the four hectares allowed under current underlying zoning.

“Council planners argued that the subdivision would have adverse landscape effects, was contrary to various planning documents and would set an inappropriate precedent. We agree with that assessment and believe there are substantive grounds to challenge the decision.

“The idea that an already small block could be subdivided at all is outrageous but here the council has allowed it to be cut up into three lots.

“In terms of the bigger picture, this kind of outcome represents the very worst of ad hoc, brainless, poor quality decision-making about the Ranges. It is a good example of why we need special legislation to protect the area and why the foothills need to be included.

“In spite of the best efforts by council officers, rogue decisions will always be made and loopholes in the rules exploited by determined developers. The Resource Management Act process just doesn’t deliver the consistency and quality outcomes we need.

“It is telling that the underlying zoning for the area sets a four hectare minimum lot size – which the Duncan property is already well below - whilst the Swanson Structure Plan, which sets lower standards, is itself under challenge in the Court.

“Much greater certainty and longer-term protection is essential if we are to avoid this sort of thing becoming more prevalent in the future,” Mr Edgar concluded.

Mr Edgar said the Society had taken legal advice and was proceeding with the appeal after careful consideration of the narrower range of issues that are relevant to such appeals. He said he was also hopeful that the Auckland Regional Council would appeal the decision as well.

Attachment: Minutes of the Waitakere City Council Hearing on the Duncan Application

The Waitakere Ranges Protection Society is a community-based organisation with a membership of over 600 individuals and families. It is an incorporated society.

It has been in existence since 1973 and in that time has campaigned for the preservation and restoration of the Ranges through direct action in restoration planting, weed control, through interventions on both planning matters and on public works which threatened the integrity of the area. Achievements include initiating and helping secure major additions to Waitakere parkland, such as the Pae O Te Rangi, Pauroa and Lake Wainamu reserves, defending large areas of bushland from subdivision, preventing three rubbish dumps in the Ranges, helping restore the Historic Winchelsea House at Karekare, commissioning numerous ecological studies of the Ranges and obtaining protection for the Ranges through improved zoning. The Society’s Patrons are Dr John Morton, Professor Richard Bellamy and the Rt Hon. Jonathan Hunt. www.waitakereranges.org.nz

Information on the proposed special legislation and a copy of the draft Bill are available at www.waitakere.govt.nz

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

  • Week in Parliament 22-05-15
  • Saturday Sitting
  • House Rises At Midnight
  • Telco Levy Bill Passes
  • Telco Levy Bill Completes First Reading
  • Social Housing Bill Passes Under Urgency

  • Labour Party: McCully Doesn’t Deny Bribe In Saudi Sheep Scandal

    “In Parliament today I asked Murray McCully directly: Why is he the first Minister in history to back a multi-million dollar facilitation arrangement which in other jurisdictions is called a bribe? says Labour’s Export Growth and Trade spokesperson ... More>>

    ALSO:

    Welfare: Closure Of Relationships Aotearoa

    The Aotearoa New Zealand Association of Social Workers (ANZASW) Chief Executive Lucy Sandford-Reed is concerned about the closure of a national service which provides a wide range of services to rural and urban communities throughout New Zealand. More>>

    ALSO:

    TPPA: University Of Auckland Warns Of Negative TPP Impact

    The University of Auckland May 20, 2015 University of Auckland Warns of Negative TPP Impact With the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiation drawing to a close, the University of Auckland has expressed serious concerns about its potential implications. ... More>>

    NZ Flag: Flag Referendum Gets Hit Hard In New Poll

    The latest Campbell Live text poll confirms it is time for the Prime Minister to listen to the public and shelve his flag referendum, says the New Zealand First Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters. More>>

    Gordon Campbell: The Government’s Belated Moves On Property Speculation

    Is it a property tax on capital gains or a capital gains tax on property? The Jesuitical distinctions in the government’s spin about its latest moves on property speculators are all about whether the government can claim that it jumped, or confess that it ... More>>

    Grant Robertson:
    Key Can’t Just Be Prime Minister For Parnell

    John Key must show New Zealanders in next week’s Budget that he is more than the Prime Minister for Parnell, and is also the Prime Minister for Pine Hill, Putararu and Palmerston North, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. In a ... More>>


    Labour Party: More Regional Jobs Go In Corrections Reshape

    News that 194 Corrections staff are to lose their jobs will have ramifications not only for them and their families but for the wider community, Labour’s Corrections spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. Prison units at Waikeria, Tongariro and Rimutaka ... More>>

    ALSO:

  • NZ First - Prison Job Losses to Send Money Offshore
  • TPPA: ‘Team Obama’ Regroups On Fast Track, Still Not Deliverable

    ‘After yesterday’s stinging and unexpected defeat for the Obama administration’s attempt to advance Fast Track legislation in the US Senate, Senate leaders have worked up a compromise they think will get them past this blockage’, according to Auckland ... More>>

    NZ Government: 5,500 More Doctors And Nurses In Our Hospitals

    Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says a record number of doctors and nurses are working in District Health Boards across the country. More>>

    Controller and Auditor General: Katherine Rich Conflict of Interest Decision

    We are writing to you about a matter that has been raised with us by members of the public. More>>

    ALSO:

    Budget 2015: Andrew Little On The 2015 Budget

    Speaking to the Chamber of Commerce, the Labour opposition leader attacked the government’s approach to economic issues facing New Zealand. He said they have been “more than reckless in their complacency” and “the next week’s budget will do nothing ... More>>

    Defence Force: NZDF Building Partner Capacity Mission Personnel In Iraq

    NZDF Building Partner Capacity Mission Personnel in Iraq The New Zealand Defence Force Building Partner Capacity training mission contingent is in place at Taji Military Complex in Iraq. The Chief of Defence Force Lieutenant General Tim Keating says the ... More>>

    PM Press Conference: ACC Levy Cuts Announced

    In a press conference this afternoon in Wellington, ACC Minister Nikki Kaye proposed $500 million worth of ACC levy cuts. More>>

    Quakes: New Process For Red Zone Crown Offers

    Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee has announced a process to give everyone a say on the Crown offers to owners of vacant, commercial/industrial and uninsured properties in the Residential Red Zone. More>>

    ALSO:

    Get More From Scoop

     

    LATEST HEADLINES

     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    Regional
    Search Scoop  
     
     
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news