Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


National: Community groups to pay fees under RMA

21 October 2008 Media Statement

National: Community groups to pay fees under RMA

National's Nick Smith has confirmed the party intends to allow courts to force community groups and individuals to pay in order to appeal decisions around developments in their neighbourhoods and regions, Labour's environment spokesman Trevor Mallard said today.

"Nick Smith confirmed during an environment debate on National Radio's Nine To Noon yesterday that his party intends to reintroduce a provision for "security for cost" where objectors – like community groups and individual people could be forced to pay to take appeals," Trevor Mallard said.

"Labour removed this provision in the Resource Management Act in 2003 as we believe the Act already allowed courts to consider whether appeals were vexatious without having to threaten would-be objectors with significant costs. As National looks to winding back the clock, Labour believes in protecting the public's right to have a say in developments in their backyard.

"This proposed move by National would act as a major deterrent for community groups and individuals wishing to get involved in the RMA process when applications come in from developers.

"It means that National's special interest developer mates who have the money, can happily gallop through the consenting process while people who oppose it, or want their voice heard will be frightened off by the prospect of having to pay costs.

"National also intends to fast track big infrastructure projects by a supposed streamlining of the RMA. Nick Smith should come clean on how the public will be consulted.

"National also intends to create a new Wellington bureaucracy which would be charged with making decisions on developments in the regions – taking this responsibility off local councils. This would be another backward step and again remove the ability of local experts and people most affected by the proposed development – to have any substantial input in the process – as is the case under Labour.

"Labour has amended the RMA to reduce delays and costs and we are supporting local government and RMA practitioners to develop best practices and improve RMA implementation," Trevor Mallard said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Back Again: Government Approves TPP11 Mandate

The Government has approved a negotiating mandate for Trans-Pacific Partnership 11 (TPP11), which will ensure New Zealand businesses remain competitive in overseas markets.

Trade Minister Todd McClay says New Zealand will be pushing for the minimal number of changes possible to the original TPP agreement, something that the remaining TPP11 countries have agreed on. More>>




Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice. More>>


Rail: Greens Back Tauranga – Hamilton – Auckland Service

The Green Party today announced that it will trial a passenger rail service between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga starting in 2019, when it is in government. More>>


Housing: Voluntary Rental Warrant Of Fitness For Wellington

Wellington City Council is partnering with the University of Otago, Wellington, to launch a voluntary Rental Warrant of Fitness for minimum housing standards in Wellington, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>


Treaty: Agreement In Principle Signed With Moriori

“The Crown acknowledges Moriori was left virtually landless from 1870, hindering its cultural, social and economic development. The Crown also acknowledges its contribution to the myths that the people of Moriori were racially inferior and became extinct." More>>


Susan Devoy: Call For Inquiry Into State Abuse Reaches UN

Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy is in Geneva and has asked a United Nations committee to urge the New Zealand government to initiate an inquiry into the physical and sexual abuse of children and disabled people held in state institutions. More>>


(Not National): Cross-Party Agreement On Pike River Re-Entry

The commitment was signed this afternoon by the leaders of Labour, United Future, The Maori Party, and the Green Party and, together with the earlier commitment by New Zealand First, means that there is now a Parliamentary majority behind the families’ fight for truth and justice. More>>






Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election