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The Mapp Report 1 July 2005

The Mapp Report 1 July 2005

Wairau Park Pak N Save Succumbs To The RMA

The recent ruling in the High Court against the resource consent of a new Pak N Save supermarket in Wairau Park highlights the serious need for reform of the Resource Management Act and the Land Transport legislation.

Foodstuffs, the owners of the Pak 'N' Save, applied in January to the North Shore City Council for a consent to build a supermarket on Wairau Road. After a panel of five independent commissioners considered the application, they granted the application for Foodstuffs on a non notified business, and work began on the site. There was an appeal to the High Court by Progressive Enterprise against the decision by the North Shore City Council

The Judge granted the appeal and all work has ceased on the site. In his decision, Justice Baragwanath said the council should have waited for the full results of investigations by Transit NZ. Transit, in an affidavit in support of Progressive Enterprises, said they needed more time to reassess 'deficiencies in the traffic reports to date.' The only relevant road owned by Transit is the Northern Motorway.

The effect of the decision is that not only does an applicant have to get resource consent from the local council, they also have to think how the development will affect the motorway system. Is this reasonable, when the developer has already consulted with the appropriate authorities?

Foodstuffs had been trying for 18 years to get a supermarket built in Wairau Road. In my view, it is quite unreasonable for a developer in an urban and commercial area to have to worry about how they might impact the motorway system. It should be enough that they seek resource consent from the proper territorial authority concerned - in this case, the North Shore City Council.

The National Party believes that the Resource Management Act needs major reform. It should not be able to be used by competitors to block developments, nor should Transit NZ effectively about act as consenting authority on top of the local territorial authority. That is why National will reform the RMA in the first 12 months of taking office, and put an end to the madness once and for all.

Unions Funding Labour's Political Campaign

The union movement are once again doing themselves no favours. Last week, they launched a blatantly anti-National political campaign, using wildly inaccurate information about National's employment policy.

The brochure is marketed by the Council of Trade Unions, but it may as well have been produced by the Labour Party. The PSA, in a recent editorial, says that as National has 'pledged to slash job cuts' then the choice at the election 'has become a lot clearer'. 'The success and well-being of the union - and that is all of us - rests on the re-election of a Labour government'.

It is yet more evidence of the 'machine' that John Tamihere says is being driven by the ninth floor of the Beehive, in a desperate effort to retain power.

Union bosses are using union funds to run the Labour party campaign. Not only does this remove choice from union members as to their political affiliation, it ruins whatever credibility unions may still have in the process.

As long as the union movement continues to live in the past, and refuses to discuss employment policy produced by National and others with a rational, open mind, then they will be doing their members a great disservice in the future when they try and negotiate with a National-led government.

ENDS

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