Streamlining The Resource Management Act
A Bill to help local authorities and people in the community use the Resource Management Act more easily, has been introduced to Parliament by the ACT party.
ACT MP Owen Jennings says the Resource Management Amendment Bill streamlines the consents process.
“The Bill frees local authorities from the monopoly they are required to work under, by allowing them to license local experts in decision-making on resource consent applications. It’s a similar situation to warrants of fitness, where approved organisations are licensed to inspect vehicles and issue warrants on behalf of the government.
“The work of local councils will be streamlined. Matters councils now decide on a discretionary basis would be approved or declined by licensed agents, leaving the councils to concentrate on broader strategic issues.
“In making use of the expertise that has built up since the Resource Management Act was introduced in 1991, the Bill benefits local communities by giving them greater involvement in local environmental issues."
Owen Jennings said the proposed change, the latest attempt by ACT to reduce the high costs associated with resource management, would be of particular help to some smaller local authorities.
“Some councils find it difficult to maintain in-house expertise across the full range of areas required and often have to contract-out consents work at significant cost.
“More responsibility and participation within the community will make the consents process work better, while allowing councils to concentrate on more valuable work.
“This is a non-controversial Bill which can only help all those it effects and I look forward to wide public and parliamentary support,” Owen Jennings said.