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

 


Reconsidering Approach to Stock Truck Discharges

Media Release

Environment Southland to Reconsider its Approach to Stock Truck Discharges


Environment Southland will reconsider its use of the Resource Management Act in its approach to stock trucks discharging effluent onto roads after the District Court awarded costs against the council on a case heard last month, Chief Executive Rob Phillips said today.

Environment Judge Jeff Smith has ruled that the Council must pay $5000 towards the legal costs incurred by Euan Shearing Contracting Ltd in preparing its defence relating to an alleged discharge of effluent from a stock truck on 31 May 2011. The Council had issued a $750 infringement notice against the company, which elected to have the matter heard in the District Court. Environment Southland withdrew the prosecution and the company sought costs.

In his ruling, Judge Smith noted that the case was “novel” in that it sought to prove the principle that a discharge of effluent from a vehicle could constitute an offence under the Resource Management Act. “Rather than seeking a law change to clarify the various issues or seeking a declaration, the Regional Council used the prosecution device in conjunction with the New Zealand Police,” Judge Smith said in his ruling. “… it was clear to the Regional Council that such a prosecution was novel and untested.”

He ruled that Environment Southland must pay $5000 towards the $7000 costs plus disbursements that the company had incurred.

Mr Phillips said that a legal audit of the Council’s compliance processes was still underway, and he would not pre-empt its findings. However, he said that it was significant that Judge Smith had not specifically criticised the amendments that a compliance officer had made to an Environment Southland form which a police officer had partly filled in after inspecting the truck.

“Much has been made in the media of allegations that a staff member had altered a police document,” Mr Phillips said. “The judgement clearly refers to “a form” – I want to reiterate that this was an Environment Southland form with an Environment Southland logo on the top that both compliance officers and Police used to record information.

Mr Phillips said that animal waste leaking from trucks on to roads remained an important issue that would have to be addressed in other ways, because motorists were rightly upset at being sprayed with effluent. Action will include establishing a network of effluent dump stations around the region. The Council has set aside funds for the first effluent dump station for stock trucks to be built on a State Highway this financial year.

Last winter there was a noticeable drop in the amount of effluent reported on roads around Southland. Mr Phillips said that keeping roads clear of effluent was not a direct responsibility of Environment Southland’s, and he acknowledged the lead role that the Transport industry and Dairy NZ had played this year to educate farmers and trucking firms.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Open Source // Open Society - Full Coverage

War: What’s To Commemorate?

Gordon Campbell in Werewolf: It is easy to know what we don’t want to commemorate on Anzac Day this year...

In fact, is there anything that can be validly commemorated on this 100th anniversary of Gallipoli?

Beyond, that is, a fleeting sense of empathy with the thousands of soldiers killed or wounded on April 25 1915 and in the months thereafter, until the whole thing was finally called off in December 1915.

(Most of the New Zealand survivors were transferred to the trenches in France, and eventually to the battle of the Somme in 1916.) More>>

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Gordon Campbell: On The Battle Obama Is Waging Over The TPP

For the past two and a half years, this column has been arguing that the fate of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal will hinge on whether US President Barack Obama can win Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) from Congress... Last week, the White House finally, finally unveiled a draft TPA Bill. More>>

ALSO:

Greens: Govt Breaks Free Doctors Visit Promise To Kids

Documents obtained by the Green Party show that the Government decided to fund only 90 percent of doctors’ visits for children suffering from an injury in an attempt trim the cost of the so-called “free” visits. More>>

ALSO:

Other Wars: Extension Of NZDF Commitment In Afghanistan

The New Zealand Defence Force’s commitment of mentors and support staff to the Afghan National Army Officer Academy in Afghanistan has been extended out to December 2016, Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee says. More>>

PM's Press Conference: Auckland Property Prices Increasing "Too Rapidly"

John Key accepted that Auckland property prices 'are going up too rapidly” in a press conference held today in Wellington, however he said that this is not anything new. More>>

ALSO:

Press Conference: ANZAC PMs Concerned About ISIL Bringing The War Home

Prime Minister Key and Prime Minister Abbott spoke of the bond formed between Australia and New Zealand in the “baptism of fire” of Gallipoli. Abbott stated that New Zealand and Australia’s values and interests are linked, and this is reflected in the joint operation in Iraq which will begin shortly. More>>

ALSO:

GCSB's China Shopping: Key Damages China Relationship

Evidence that the Key Government recklessly approved a GCSB spying operation to intercept Chinese diplomatic communications between offices in Auckland will pointlessly damage our relationship with China, the Green Party said today. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Reserve Bank And Auckland Housing

The ‘crisis – what crisis?’ response by the government to the Auckland housing price bubble is no longer acceptable. So says Reserve Bank governor Grant Spencer... More>>

ALSO:

Troops Heading To Iraq: Government Must Come Clean On Deployment

New Zealanders deserve more than to hear about their troops’ deployment overseas from Australian media, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “News from Australia that Kiwi troops are on their way to Iraq this week is another example of the culture of secrecy and unknown protections around the deployment.” More>>

ALSO:

Image: Strikers And Protestors Join Outside McDonald's

A group of protestors took to McDonald’s Manners St today as a part of the international fast food workers day of action to end zero hour contracts. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news