I bet Dunne and Seymour feel like right nancies about now

Peter Dunne and David Seymour thought they’d help out Nick Smith with RMA reform.

Unfortunately for them he spat in their faces and preferred a solution that caves in to brownmail.

The Government and the Maori Party have struck a deal to back Resource Management Act reforms, despite a last-ditch bid from other parties to provide a better offer.

The announcement ensures the controversial Resource Legislation Amendment Bill, intended to speed up planning and consent laws, will pass into law after years of delays.

In a statement on Thursday, Maori Party co-leaders Marama Fox and Te Ururoa Flavell announced they had reached agreement to support the final stages of the legislation.

“We’ve worked hard on the outcomes to reach an agreement that we are satisfied with,” Flavell said.

Which is code for we bent Nick Smith over a table and rogered him until tears ran.

The Government and the Maori Party announced a deal last November to move ahead with the RMA reforms, after reaching agreement on changes to give Maori greater involvement in the consenting process.

However, the Maori Party subsequently raised concerns about section 360D of the bill, which could let the Government overrule local councils’ bans on genetically modified organisms, writing to Environment Minister Nick Smith with a “please explain”.

It is unclear what changes, if any, have been made to that section of the legislation.

News of a final deal comes after ACT and UnitedFuture made an attempt to hijack the negotiations with an alternative offer to support the RMA changes.

In an open letter to Prime Minister Bill English, UnitedFuture leader Peter Dunne and ACT leader David Seymour said they would support the legislation if changes were made to: provide greater recognition of property rights when considering consents; remove excessive ministerial powers; and strip out “iwi participation agreements” giving Maori greater say in decision making.

Dunne said he and Seymour had made the same offer about a year ago, but wanted to repeat it as uncertainty over the RMA bill’s fate “has become even more rife”.

“There are a number of things in the act that everybody recognises needs to be changed, but that change process has been halted simply because of an obstinacy on the part of the Government…

“We’re trying to be constructive here, if they don’t accept the offer then fine, the status quo will prevail.”

Except those two tools got gazumped.

What this deal with the Maori party has ensured is a rather nasty third party campaign against Nick Smith. You heard it here first.

 

– Fairfax

 


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