Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Another set of amendments to the Resource Management Act

Media Release: Another set of amendments to the Resource Management Act

The Environmental Defence Society has noted that the Government has introduced further amendments to the Resource Management Act and related legislation today.

“The Resource Management Reform Bill is extensive and was expected. It deals in large part with machinery matters but there are substantive changes some of which look acceptable and some of which are clearly controversial and will need detailed analysis,” said Mr Taylor.

“The uncontroversial changes include creating a faster track for mid-sized resource consents which is consistent with the Government’s intention of streamlining the implementation of the RMA.

“Other provisions deal with the creation of the Auckland Unitary Plan and were well signalled. The plan will be subject to a single hearing before an independent panel of experts with appeals available only on points of law, unless the Auckland Council rejects the panel’s recommendations, in which case parties will be able to appeal to the Environment Court.

“We do however think that Auckland Council should appoint the Panel, not Ministers, since it is Auckland’s plan and ratepayers are meeting all the costs.

“There is a new requirement to have regard to the Auckland Plan when preparing the Unitary Plan which is sensible.

“The Government is also proposing changes to section 32 which requires a cost-benefit analysis of all proposed plan provisions. The new section 32 retains the requirement to assess whether the objectives of a plan are the most appropriate way to achieve the purpose of the Act. It also contains useful amendments such as a requirement for the analysis to be made available as soon as practicable or at the time of public notification of the planning document.

“However, the proposed section does emphasise economic development, including a specific requirement to identify and assess the effects on economic growth and employment.

“The most controversial changes would further restrict the ability of Councils to protect significant urban trees. The Bill overrules an Environment Court decision in 2011 and requires tree protection rules in plans to identify individual trees or a cluster, grove, or line of trees in a schedule to the plan by street address and/or legal description of the land.

“This is imposing a massively bureaucratic responsibility on Councils and not all of them will have the capacity to carry out this exercise.

“Eighty seven percent of New Zealanders live in urban areas and trees contribute significantly to amenity values in the urban environment. The proposed amendments make it hugely difficult to protect urban trees and would be a step towards a future of barren, lifeless cities. I’m sure there’ll be a lot of opposition to these changes.

“Our expectation is that more controversial changes to the RMA will follow, including proposals relating to sections 6 & 7 (which contain the key principles of the RMA). We’re expecting a discussion paper on these topics to be released in 2013. There is real concern that those proposals might significantly weaken the Act and lower our environmental standards,” Mr Taylor concluded

ENDS

To See the Bill, click here

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On Winston Peters’ Latest Bout Of Immigrant Bashing

So in the latest 3News-Reid Research poll, New Zealand First and the Conservatives have been the big winners. It is only one poll, but rather than cannibalising each other’s vote, Colin Craig and Winston Peters do seem to be managing to find the room to co-exist...

Poll fixation though, is a symptom of horse race journalism. To date, the focus has been on the poll numbers for New Zealand First – at 6.3% in this latest poll – and the power that this puts in Peters’ hands. Few are questioning how he’s got to this happy place, and what it says about the mood of the electorate. Yet as sure as night follows day, Winston Peters is once again peddling bile at the immigrants in our midst. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Collins 'Misinterprets Media Reports': "Too Compromised To Remain Justice Minister"

Bizarre claims by Judith Collins this morning that she had been cleared of inappropriate behaviour by the Privacy Commissioner demonstrates she is too compromised to remain Justice Minister, Labour MP Grant Robertson says. More>>

ALSO:

Labour On Climate Change: Focus On The Now For The Future

A Labour Government will put in place a comprehensive climate change strategy focusing on both mitigation and adaptation, establish an independent Climate Commission and implement carbon budgeting, says Labour Climate Change spokesperson Moana Mackey. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On National’s Housing Assistance Plan

So, as many as 90,000 people could derive some benefit from National’s housing assistance plans for low and middle-income earners... Yet in reality, the benefits seem likely to be insignificant, and they will be skewed towards those at the top end of the income group that’s supposedly the target. More>>

ALSO:

Election Data Consortium: National’s Worst Case Scenario At Stage One?

A month out from the general election and ipredict traders are still forecasting National’s vote to slip below current polling levels and there is potential for it to fall further. More>>

ALSO:

From The Scoop Video Archive: PM Says SIS "Told Me" About OIA Release

In a press conference immediately following an controversial OIA release of notes on an SIS briefing to then Labour leader Phil Goff, Key said "at that point [Tucker] told me he'd release it ...". Since the release of Nicky Hager's 'Dirty Politics' Key has denied being personally informed and said references by officials to 'the PM' being told briefed referred to his office. He now says the same about his own statement. More>>

ALSO:

  • Scoop Video in the news - New questions over Key claims | NZ Herald News - Stuff.co.nz
  • Earlier - Felix Marwick: Laying out facts over SIS documents - Newstalk ZB
  • Labour - Director’s letter contradicts Key’s claims
  • ACT - The Letter - 26 days to go
  • TV3 Video - Housing issue nudges Dirty Politics aside - David Cunliffe: Key's SIS explanation 'defies belief' - SIS leak came from Key's Office - Goff - Key 'categorically denies' Slater OIA discussion - Video: Key faces more Dirty Politics questions

  • TVNZ - Winston Peters: ‘Dirty Politics' is a new low
  • The Nation - Debate Between Grant Robertson And Russel Norman
  • NZ First - “The Words Mean What I Say They Mean”
  • Schools, PPTA Sign Up: Primary Teachers And Principals Vote Down Govt Plan

    Teachers and principals have voted overwhelmingly against the Government’s controversial “Investing in Educational Success” policy, including proposed highly-paid principal and teacher roles. More>>

    ALSO:

    Gordon Campbell: On The Usual Round Of Mud Slinging And Name-Calling

    This week gave an interesting example of how hard it is to untangle the reality from the slanging matches. The issue that emerged early this week could hardly be more important. Does the government intend to cut spending in health, education and on the environment if re-elected, or not? More>>

    Earlier:

    Electionresults.co.nz: National and NZ First Rise in Roy Morgan Poll

    National has bounced back in the latest Roy Morgan Poll but the big winner has been New Zealand First who rise to their highest level of support since September 2013. More>>

    ALSO:

    Get More From Scoop

     

    LATEST HEADLINES

     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    Politics
    Search Scoop  
     
     
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news