Minister Welcomes RMA Committee's Work
The Minister for the Environment welcomes the Local Government and Environment Select Committee's report on the Resource Management Amendment Bill.
"The Resource Management Act ensures that New Zealand remains clean and green and the Committee has decided to improve the RMA without compromising the environmental outcomes that we rely on the Act to protect," Marian Hobbs said.
"I am really pleased that the Committee has decided to strengthen national tools and make the process for developing them easier. Strengthening national instruments complements the work that this Government is doing to provide the guidance that councils have been seeking from central government for the last 10 years.
"The business community will also welcome the increase in national consistency that will result from more central government guidance."
A national policy statement on biodiversity and the first national standard for dioxins are due to be completed later this year under this amended act.
"I am also very pleased to read that the Committee has decided to streamline some processes to keep compliance costs down," Marian Hobbs said. "This complements our work with local government on best practice to improve council performance and consistency."
The Minister said she supported the Committee's decisions to reject contestable consent processing and commissioner hearings.
"Both of these would have resulted in poor environmental outcomes, cutting the community out of deciding about their own environment, not to mention setting up an overly complicated system," she added.
Marian Hobbs said the amendment will ensure that the processes of the Act work better, without compromising what it was originally set up to achieve – a healthy environment for all New Zealanders.