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Carter comments on Whangamata Marina case

Hon Chris Carter
Minister of Conservation

19 September 2006 Media Statement

Carter comments on Whangamata Marina case

The Crown will take legal advice before deciding whether to appeal the High Court's decision on the Whangamata Marina, Conservation Minister Chris Carter said today.

"Justice Fogarty considered the process I used to make my decision, not the decision itself. He considered seven procedural matters, and found in favour of the Crown on four of them. He found no evidence of bias, predetermination or irrationality in my decision-making," Mr Carter said.

"Because of the complexity of this case and the depth of feeling about it in the community, I went the extra mile in my deliberations. I read the transcripts of evidence presented to the Environment Court in addition to the Court's report, and I met with groups on both sides of the issue to try and get a better understanding of it. Justice Fogarty has said I made procedural errors in doing that.

"I wish to take advice on the implications of Justice Fogarty's ruling for other complex ministerial decisions before deciding whether to appeal.

"I note Justice Fogarty has confirmed me as the decision-maker, and as I indicated when I first announced my decision, I remain willing to reconsider the issue," Mr Carter said.

"I note that there have been claims made by National MP Nick Smith about the costs to the taxpayer of this case. The public needs to bear in mind it is likely I would have been judicially reviewed by one group or other regardless of what my original decision was."


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