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Local Govt Planning Changes May Not Achieve Desired Uplift

Local Government Planning Changes May Not Achieve Desired Uplift

Local Government New Zealand, the peak body representing local authorities around New Zealand, broadly supports the Government’s announcement today to streamline planning requirements for councils.

“There are positive aspects.  LGNZ agrees with improving transparency to the community and supports the flexibility about methods and frequency of community consultation.  Streamlining plans and reducing unnecessary costs for councils and ratepayers is an important aspect of change for local government,” said LGNZ President, Lawrence Yule.

However, LGNZ says the requirement to incorporate 30 year infrastructure strategies into councils’ long term plans may place an extra cost burden on councils.  It also questions whether these mandatory requirements will have the desired effect.

“At present, most councils already have strategic asset management processes in place across drinking, storm, waste water and roading infrastructure.  It’s unclear how adding a mandatory 30 year infrastructure strategy into long term plans will, on its own, lift the quality of asset management.  Instead it may incur an added cost burden and appears to be at odds with the streamlined approach.

“Additional disclosures on insurances and financial risk sharing arrangements are, again, another additional requirement which will cost councils and their communities.

“Instead, LGNZ considers it will be more effective to continue dialogue with the Government on infrastructure development strategy across the country, including national plans to develop housing, roading and local economies,” said Mr Yule.


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