Resource Legislation Amendment Bill

Awatere River

EDS’s extensive draft submissions on this important Bill are available for review and comment on our website until noon on Monday 14 March. We would welcome any informed feedback as we seek to complete a comprehensive and accurate analysis and submission.

The Bill avoids the earlier contentious changes to the purposes and principles of the Resource Management Act and seeks instead to improve the processes of plan-making and consenting. It achieves some improvements but as with most resource management amendments in recent years, goes too far.

The Bill effectively compromises environmental bottom lines, gives vastly increased powers to the Minister of the Environment with few checks and balances and proposes further reductions in public rights to engage in decision-making.

A number of provisions are clearly aimed at dealing with urban growth pressures but are applied across the board. The solution here is for the Bill to be redrafted to create bespoke urban planning provisions that are focused on that function. Alternatively an NPS on urban issues could assist.

Overall the problems can be fixed via the select committee process but time will need to be made available to dive into the detail. If key stakeholders are limited to the usual 10 or 20 minutes we could well end up with suboptimal law. 

View EDS's draft submissions.

Published March 2016.

Last updated at 10:34AM on August 8, 2016