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

Gordon Campbell: On Drone Strikes And Judith Collins‘ Last Stand

The news that a New Zealand citizen was killed last November in a US drone attack in Yemen brings the drones controversy closer to home.

To the US, drones are a legitimate response to the threat posed by the al Qaeda organisation and its franchisees... To the US, the drones carry the added advantage of not putting US troops at risk on the ground, and minimises the need for putting them in large numbers in bases in the countries concerned, always a politically sensitive point.

The counter-argument, well articulated by security analyst Paul Buchanan on RNZ this morning, is that this particular drone attack can be said to amount to an extra-judicial execution of a New Zealand citizen by one of our military allies, in circumstances where the person concerned posed no threat to New Zealand’s domestic security. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Policies: Labour’s Economic Upgrade For Manufacturing

Labour Leader David Cunliffe has today announced his Economic Upgrade for the manufacturing sector – a plan that will create better jobs and higher wages. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Life And ACC Work Of Sir Owen Woodhouse

With the death of Sir Owen Woodhouse, the founding father of the Accident Compensation Scheme, New Zealand has lost one of the titans of its post-war social policy. More>>

ALSO:

Bad Transnationals: Rio Tinto Wins 2013 Roger Award

It won the 2011 Roger Award and was runner up in 2012, 2009 and 08. One 2013 nomination said simply and in its entirety: “Blackmailing country”... More>>

ALSO:

Select Committees: Tobacco Plain Packaging Hearings

The Stroke Foundation is today backing the Cancer Society and Smokefree Coalition who are making oral submissions to the Health Select Committee in support of proposed legislation to remove of all branding from tobacco products. More>>

ALSO:

Milk: Oravida Asked For Cabinet Help

New evidence released by New Zealand First today reveals Justice Minister Judith Collins used her position to manipulate the Government to help her husband’s company, Oravida, after the Fonterra botulism scare, says New Zealand First Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters. More>>

ALSO:

With Conditions: Ruataniwha Consents Approved In Draft Decision

The Tukituki Catchment Proposal Board of Inquiry has granted 17 resource consents relating to the $265 million Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme in a draft decision that would open more of the Hawke’s Bay to irrigation. More>>

ALSO:

Fast Lanes, Campervans: Labour 'Making The Holidays Easier For Kiwi Drivers'

The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Royalty And Its Tourism Spin-Offs

Ultimately the Queen’s longevity has been one of her most significant accomplishments. A transition to Prince Charles while the monarchy was in the pits of public esteem in the mid to late 1990s would have been disastrous for the Royal Firm. Far more congenial representatives have now emerged... More>>

ALSO:

Privacy (Again): ACC Demands Excessive Privacy Waivers

Labour: “This is just another example of ACC under National deliberately acting to deny treatment and compensation... Those who did fill in the form have effectively been victims of yet another ACC privacy breach. This time Judith Collins knew it was happening..." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news