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Govt announces Environment Canterbury review team

Hon Dr Nick Smith
Minister for the Environment

Hon Rodney Hide
Minister of Local Government

16 November 2009
Media Statement

Govt announces Environment Canterbury review team

Environment Minister Nick Smith and Local Government Minister Rodney Hide today announced the members of the review team that will investigate Environment Canterbury’s poor performance.

“Last month we announced that the Government was not satisfied with Environment Canterbury's performance and that an external review was necessary to fix the Council’s problems,” Dr Smith and Mr Hide said.

“The areas of concern are the processing of resource consents on time, developing a proper framework for managing Canterbury's natural resources, and the management of relationships with Canterbury's territorial local authorities.

“The first component of the review is under Section 24A of the Resource Management Act, looking into Environment Canterbury's resource management functions. The second is a non-statutory assessment of Environment Canterbury's governance and policy functions under the Local Government Act."

Dr Smith said former Deputy Prime Minister Wyatt Creech would oversee the RMA investigation working with Doug Martin of MartinJenkins and Associates and independent consultant Greg Hill.

Mr Hide said the review of Environment Canterbury’s governance, policy functions and relationships with other councils would be done by civil engineer Doug Lowe, consultant Julie Clausen and economist Alison Dalziel.

Both reviews start at Environment Canterbury today and are due to be completed by Friday 4 December. The report is due with the Ministers in January 2010.

“These appointments and the review timetable have been discussed with Environment Canterbury,” the Ministers said.

Biographies of review team

Wyatt Creech (independent consultant)
Rt Hon Wyatt Creech is an experienced business man, with knowledge in farming, wine production, and accounting. He was elected to parliament in 1988. He held office for 15 years representing the Wairarapa and in that time held many senior portfolios for the National Government including Leader of the House and Deputy Prime Minister. Wyatt was a member of the Resource Management Act Technical Advisory Group, is on the Board of Directors of the Open Country Cheese Company and is chairman of the Board of the Kaimai Cheese Company Ltd.

Doug Martin
Director, MartinJenkins and Associates. Doug was appointed by the State Services Commission to be one of three Lead Assessors for the purpose of piloting the new Performance Improvement Framework that will be applied to State Sector Agencies. Doug was appointed because of his experience and credibility. Doug also conducted a culture review of Auckland City Council for the Mayor, Hon John Banks, and more recently conducted a value for money review of the Department of Corrections. He will be working with his associate Nigel Bradly.

Greg Hill
Greg is a RMA consultant. He has approximately 25 years experience and is also an independent commissioner. He has been employed by Territorial Authorities, Regional Councils and Central Government. Greg was the General Manager of Policy and Planning at Auckland Regional Council.

Doug Low
Doug is a founding director of Morrison Low and a civil engineer with significant experience in managing major infrastructure and development projects, procurement in a government/local government setting, strategic and general management and organisational change. He has held senior management positions in large public bodies and has a track record of getting results using practical solutions while retaining a strategic view.

Julie Clausen
Julie has considerable experience providing both strategic and operational financial advice to Local Government. As the manager of the financial team and business leader for revenue and rate funding of a large regional council, Julie has developed an extensive knowledge of local government financial requirements. As a consultant Julie has assisted councils, both in New Zealand and Australia, with financial strategy and funding policy development and in particular the development of Long Term Financial Strategies.

Alison Dalziel
Alison is an economist with more than 20 years of experience in central and local government. Her background includes policy and strategy, finance, corporate planning, economic development, urban development, and sector and regional development. Alison has worked in several central government departments and metropolitan councils in a variety of senior management roles.


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