15 March 2016: The Government is proposing some pretty fundamental changes to the Resource Management Act with its Resource Legislation Bill. Submissions just closed on this Bill and since then there has been a bit of media, much of it pointing out how the Bill proposes to limit public participation in resource management processes and decision making.
There are concerns the Department of Conservation won’t be able to do their job of advocating for conservation - and we think this proposed amendment will limit the ability of other public good organisations, including community groups to make submissions and be involved in environmental decision making processes.
The Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, JAN WRIGHT has said the amendments go too far in stopping people have their say on important environmental matters – and we agree.
DUNEDIN CITY COUNCIL has expressed concerns that the Bill, if it becomes law, will add serious costs to local councils, and increase costs and reduce participation for the public.
We also have significant concerns with how these proposed changes will impact on the ability of the public to be involved in decisions that affect them, and the affect they will have on quality decision making. We are so concerned we made our own submission.
Helen Marr often works on the ‘pointy’ end of natural resources policy, and thinks knowledge is empowering and new ideas are energising.