Green Taliban: RMA reforms will “lock people out”

Yes.  That’s the whole bloody point.  To allow people to develop their properties without others trying to run the country by committee.

The Green Party has criticised proposed changes to the Resource Management Act (RMA), saying the overhaul would leave many people out of the consultation loop.

The Government has finally secured the numbers to change the legislation after getting the backing of the Maori Party.

The proposed changes are expected to reduce unnecessary red tape and speed up construction, which could help ease Auckland’s desperate housing market.

But Green Party co-leader Metiria Turei says the changes will leave too many people without the means to voice their opinion on changes in their neighbourhoods.

“The major part [of the legislation] will be locking people out of consultation and having a say,” Ms Turei told the Paul Henry programme this morning.

She says even under the current laws, only a relatively small number of people are actually involved in the process.

And those make a huge mess.   Not only that, the costs, the delays and the waste of productivity in general it causes is disproportionate.   

Ms Turei conceded that for some large projects and developments the RMA could hold up progress, “but in the vast majority of cases the RMA is not the block, it is argued to be so by developers and by Government, who doesn’t like it, but actually the RMA already sets the parameters of balancing the environment with people’s right to have a say for what goes on, and that balance is now being undone by these reforms.”

“We’re talking about people’s neighbourhoods; there are big issues in Auckland at the moment about the nature of development in Auckland City – should Aucklanders be locked out of having a say about what happens in their city?”

The changes have been welcomed by the Local Government New Zealand, which said they would lead to processes being made easier and more cost efficient for councils and communities.

The Resource Legislation Amendment Bill will have its first reading in Parliament next Thursday, before being referred to the Local Government and Environment Select Committee.

It may not block development on the majority of applications, but when it costs more to licence your new pergola than it costs to build, there is something seriously wrong with the process.   It’s obvious we don’t want to throw the baby out with the bath water but, as per usual, the “Ban and Tax” people don’t like having their tools taken away.


– 3 News

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.