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Resource management reform options released

Environment Minister David Parker. Photo: RNZ / Ana Tovey.

A panel undertaking a comprehensive review of the Resource Management Act is asking for feedback to inform its final report.

In July the Government announced the comprehensive review of the resource management system, including the RMA - the first such review in 30 years.

The expert Resource Management Review Panel, chaired by retired appeal court judge Tony Randerson, is tasked with producing reform proposals by mid-2020, including drafting of key legislative provisions.

The panel has also has identified the main issues to be addressed and options for reform.

Environment Minister David Parker welcomed progress on the overhaul of the RMA with the release of the panel’s Issues and Options paper.

“The RMA is responsible for managing our built and natural environment, and it has been underperforming,” David says.

“It costs too much, it takes too long and it has not protected the environment. That is not an acceptable outcome in a country that values the protection of the environment while properly housing our people.

“The Issues and Options paper looks at what changes are needed to fix the system to ensure we have liveable urban and rural areas, that Māori have an effective role in the resource management system, that we improve our deteriorating freshwater quality and biodiversity, and that we respond to the effects of climate change.

“The proposals are indicative of the range of possibilities. For example, whether the RMA’s core purpose of sustainable management should change or if legislation dealing with urban development and environmental management should be separated,” he says.

People can provide feedback via the Ministry for Environment’s website.

“This will help inform the panel’s final report on reform proposals, which is due to the Government by mid-2020. The Government will then consult on proposals for reform.”

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