New guidelines to assist RMA compliance

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Wellington, July 17, 2018

New guidelines released today by Environment Minister David Parker are intended to assist councils in their monitoring, compliance and enforcement duties under the Resource Management Act.

Following is his Statement:

Rule of Law

Enforcement of the rule of law will always be essential to encourage broader compliance. This is true in criminal, transport, taxation or environmental law.

Without robust compliance, monitoring and enforcement (CME) practice, RMA plan rules and consent conditions are too often ignored. Voluntary compliance by the majority can be undermined by the minority who do not comply.

Though the RMA allows for a tailored and localised approach to CME, there are models and principles of best practice that can be adapted to suit local circumstances. The purpose of these guidelines is to clarify what best practice looks like by providing guidance and support for frontline staff through standard tools and templates.

Non-Complaint Consents

National Monitoring System data shows that 14% of resource consents monitored by all councils in 2015/16 were non-compliant. This figure was 20% for regional councils.

The Environment Ministry is establishing a new unit to oversee compliance with the Resource Management Act and to improve consistency across councils.

Operating funding of $3.1 million over four years was allocated for the unit in this year’s Budget.

The guidelines are available at: http://www.mfe.govt.nz/publications/rma/best-practice-guidelines-compliance-monitoring-and-enforcement-under-resource

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(Image from Environment Ministry Website)

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