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TPPA, Environment and Arts the key focus at today’s meeting

TPPA, Environment and Arts the key focus at today’s meeting

A strong direction on how to protect Auckland’s environment was discussed across various aspects of today’s agenda including Stormwater and Solid Waste controls, pest management and a commitment to environmental action and green growth. The Regional Strategy and Policy Committee also received the Arts and Culture Strategic Action Plan and various presentations were made on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. The following is a digest of all decisions made.

The agenda is available on Auckland Council’s website and minutes will be added once confirmed. This meeting was also webcast on the council’s website and items will be available on demand within 24 hours of the meeting. Items 1-4 are administrative items and there was no extraordinary business.

Item 5.1: Public Input – Mary Dawson, Auckland Regional Migrant Services (ARMS)

Mary Dawson, CE of Auckland Regional Migrant Services (ARMS) Trust and Dame Susan Devoy, patron, gave the committee an update on the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employments decision to conclude their contract with the ARMS Trust. A proposal was put forward asking council to agree to a partnership agreement with ARMS. Strategic priorities were presented to the committee, which included the co-relation with Auckland Council’s focus on empowering communities.

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The committee were very supportive of ARMS work and agreed to identify options of re-allocating budgeting and for the Chair to meet with MBIE and the Ministry of Immigration.

Item 5.2: Barry Coates - Sustainable Initiatives Aotearoa

Barry Coates, representing It’s our Future coalition, addressed the committee regarding concerns on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA). He was seeking clarification on a previous resolution by council (6 Dec 2012) to the Minister of Trade. Mr Coates presented to the committee on impacts that he felt Local Government faced due to the signing of the TPPA.

New Zealand has made an initial signing to the TPPA this week by. A council officer then clarified that there is a Parliamentary process over the next 30-60 days that New Zealand will go through following the initial TPPA negotiations and Auckland Council may have the opportunity to engage in the process.

Item 6: Local Board Input: Graeme Easte, Albert-Eden

Albert-Eden Local Board member Graeme Easte also wished to speak to the committee about his board’s views on the TPPA, and how it may impact the board’s businesses and communities.

Item 8: Notice of Motion – Councillor Wayne Walker, Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA)

Cr Wayne Walker put forward a Notice of Motion with a number of recommendations for the committee to consider regarding the TPPA. Cr Walker talked to the committee about working on a resolution to give to Government stating Auckland Council’s concerns with aspects of the TPPA. After much discussion, the committee agreed that council needed to know more about what exactly was in the trade agreement as soon as possible.

Item 9: Approval of Auckland Council Stormwater Code of Practice

The committee was asked to approve the Stormwater Code of Practice which sets minimum standards for the quality of stormwater infrastructure under the Stormwater Bylaw 2015. The scope of the Stormwater Code of Practice (CoP) is the design and construction of new public stormwater assets and any private stormwater assets which are to be vested in council ownership. The committee approved the CoP which will align with the bylaw coming into effect 1 November 2015.

Item 10: Controls under the Solid Waste Bylaw 2012 for disposal of waste to land

A Disposal of Waste to Land Control was proposed to the committee. Under the Solid Waste Bylaw 2012 all waste facilities must be licenced, except for cleanfill facilities that accept ‘cleanfill material.’ As this was not clearly defined, a Disposal of Waste to Land Control has now been developed and it clarifies which facilities must be licensed and reflects the responsibilities of those disposing of waste to cleanfill and managed fill sites. The committee agreed with the new control which will come into effect 31 October 2015.

Item 11: Adoption of Auckland Growing Greener – te pai me te whai rawa o Tamaki

A commitment to achieve a green Auckland through environmental action and green growth was endorsed by the Regional Strategy and Policy Committee today. Members received a presentation on the Auckland Growing Greener initiative. The document outlines an ongoing initiative by council to act as a catalyst to empower Aucklanders to live and work in ways that promote and support our natural environment.

Cr George Wood, Chair of the Regional and Strategy Committee said, “Auckland Growing Greener gives us the guidance we need to continue what we have started in former legacy councils and get the entire Auckland region on board. By embedding sustainability practices and environment into everything council does, we protect our environment for future generations as our region grows and prospers.”

Priority areas where Auckland Council has a particular role to play as regulator, provider, facilitator and partner are: Urban Transformation, Zero Waste, Restoring Nature and Healthy Waters. Water-sensitive design and fresh-water management were high areas of interest to the committee as part of the discussion.

The document highlights the range and depth of council’s work to protect and restore our natural environment and describes ways to accelerate this through embedding five proposed operating principles. To find out more, a full copy of the document is in the Agenda online.

Item 12: Regional Pest Management Plan Review

A discussion document and brochure that have been prepared for the first stage of a consultation process on Auckland’s Regional Pest Management Plan was presented to the committee for approval. Public consultation will commence later this year and council is seeking informal feedback to gauge community expectations, and make them aware of pest management controls, plant pests and marine biosecurity. A second consultation will follow next year. The committee approved the consultation documents.

Item 13: Arts and Culture Strategic Action Plan

The Arts and Culture Strategic Action Plan was put forward today for adoption. The plan has a core strategic goal to integrate arts and culture into our everyday lives. Staff consulted with arts and culture stakeholders from a wide range of communities when developing the plan. It will guide investment and provision of arts and culture across the Auckland region for the next 10 years. The committee adopted the Arts and Culture Strategic Action Plan.

Item 14: Auckland Council submission to the Strategy to Prevent and Minimise Gambling Harm

Retrospective endorsement was sought of council’s submission to the Ministry of Health’s Strategy to Prevent and Minimise Gambling Harm 2016/17 to 2018/19 Consultation document. This was endorsed.

Item 15: Auckland Councils submission on the Sale and Supply of Alcohol Act (Extended licensing hours during RWC) Bill

Retrospective endorsement was sought, and received, on council’s submission to the Justice and Electoral Committee on the Sale and Supply of Alcohol (Extended hours during Rugby World Cup) Bill.

Item 16: Auckland Council’s Submission on Land Access Telecommunications

The committee agreed to retrospectively endorse Auckland Council’s submission on the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Land Access for Telecommunications discussion document.

ENDS

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