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Baldock welcomes Marine Reserves Bill extension

Baldock welcomes Marine Reserves Bill extension

United Future environment spokesman Larry Baldock today welcomed the extension of the select committee report back date on the Marine Reserves Bill, saying it would ensure submitters were fairly treated.

Parliament’s Business Committee has approved extending the report back date until August.

“I personally believe that many submitters were very concerned about this Bill proceeding while the oceans policy was still being worked out,” Mr Baldock said.

“Add to that the additional complications associated with the Foreshore and Seabed Act, and the marine protected areas consultation under way, and it is wise to put a hold on the passage of any new marine reserves legislation.”

Mr Baldock said many submitters had expressed the view that the oceans policy should first be completed as the over-arching principles under which all the other marine conservation issues and strategy should fit.

He said the August 11 report back date was so close to the likely election date that it would be best to leave any further developments until after the poll.

He added that he was very interested in seeing how the Fiordland Marine Management Bill develops and whether it will usher in a new era of local decision-making and management of inshore marine areas.

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