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RMA to blame for dying lakes

RMA to blame for dying lakes

Lake Rotoiti is a national disgrace, the Employers & Manufacturers Association (Northern) says, and the blame for it can be sheeted back to the failure of the Resource Management Act 1991.

"The RMA has had over a decade to protect our treasured lakes and has failed spectacularly," said Alasdair Thompson, EMA's chief executive.

"After more than 10 years to start making a difference the powers of the RMA or its implementation processes are proving ineffective.

"The venal hand wringing by some of our resource management law fraternity raises the question if they are part of the problem or the solution.

"The RMA is plainly costing New Zealand's heritage as well as our aspirations for a higher standard of living, better education and health care

"Many legitimate development projects are being held up unnecessarily by the RMA. For example, though 95% of 49,000 resource consent applications were heard over a two year period within statutory timeframes, they were on average preceded by up to two years of consultation and followed by three years of further delays in the hearing of appeals.

"Under these circumstances it is laughable to think Auckland will have its motorway network by the end of this decade.

"It took 8 years before construction could even start on the Grafton Gully project.

"The tortuous, expensive and ineffective RMA and its operation by local councils must be fixed to ensure our natural heritage treasures are protected while streamlining the processing of legitimate development applications."

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