New Zealand
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Resource Management reform report-back makes useful changes

Environment Minister David Parker today welcomed the Environment Select Committee's report into the new resource management reform laws.

"Around 3000 submissions were received - I want to thank submitters who took the time and effort to make their views known. Systemic reform of this nature is complex, and we rely on the input of system users to get the details right.

"Around 94 per cent of all submitters agreed on the need for system reform. By and large, major organisations on all sides were broadly supportive of the aims of the reform.

These include:

"The reform will establish a more efficient, less costly system that allows the housing and infrastructure we need for our communities to thrive, without depleting our natural resources and degrading the state of our environment.

"Many submitters provided constructive comments to improve the workability of the new legislation. I also want to thank the select committee for its excellent work in ensuring that the legislation gives practical effect to our reform intentions."

Significant changes to the Spatial Planning and Natural and Built Environment (NBE) Bills, as reported back from select committee, include:

"The RMA takes too long, costs too much and does not adequately protect the environment. It's time to repeal it," said David Parker. "The new system will cost less for users.

"The select committee's report is the latest step in a thorough engagement process on the key principles and practical detail of the reform. It follows the year-long Randerson review, a select committee inquiry into the key provisions, and earlier reports by key organisations including the Northern Employers and Manufacturers' Association, the Environmental Defence Society, Infrastructure New Zealand, the Property Council, the Waitangi Tribunal and Local Government NZ.

"I'd like to thank the committee for the role it has played in ensuring the new legislation is as robust and workable as it can be. I look forward to diving into the select committee's recommendations and debating the Bills with my parliamentary colleagues during the next stages of the legislative process," David Parker said.

Source: Beehive