Environmental / Resource Management

The Resource Management Amendment Bill

Created: Friday, 27 September 2019 07:20

The Resource Management Amendment Bill was introduced earlier this week.  The Bill includes revisiting restrictions on public notification and appeals, reinstating financial contributions and adding a new specialised process for freshwater decision-making.  You can view the full list of proposals in the Explanatory Note at the following link:

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Adequacy of Information for Notification Decisions -Discount Brands, Subsequent Legislative Amendments and Case Law

Created: Monday, 27 May 2019 09:52

The Supreme Court’s decision in Discount Brands Ltd v Westfield (New Zealand) Ltd [2005] NZSC 17 established the standard of information consent authorities require to make notification decisions under the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA). However, subsequent amendments to the notification provisions of the RMA removed the express statutory requirement for consent authorities to have adequate information, and replaced the rebuttable presumption of notification with a discretion to notify, casting doubt on the continued applicability of Discount Brands.

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Relevant Plan Provisions Must Prevail in Determining Whether Adverse Effects Arise

Created: Wednesday, 03 April 2019 15:05

In the recent decision of Liu v Auckland Council [2019] NZEnvC 33 the Environment Court cautioned that personal views as to what constitutes an adverse effect must not outweigh the application of relevant planning provisions. The decision also provides helpful commentary regarding the nature of the abatement notice appeal regime under the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA).

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Financial Contribution Conditions Now Confirmed to be Available for Designations

Created: Thursday, 28 March 2019 08:20

Earlier this month, in the decision Tauranga City Council v Minister of Education [2019] NZEnvC 032, the Environment Court considered as a preliminary question of law whether sections 171 or 174 of the RMA allow a territorial authority to recommend, and the Environment Court to impose, conditions requiring “monetary contributions” on designations (other than conditions that are offered on an Augier basis)

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Old Argument over Subdivision of Cross Lease Titles Put to Rest

Created: Thursday, 01 November 2018 17:08

In its recent decision in Re McKay the Environment Court has determined that the conversion of a cross lease title to a fee simple (freehold) title constitutes a subdivision in terms of the Resource Management Act 1991. 

This is an unsurprising decision given the terms of the Resource Management Act and having regard to the true nature of a cross lease title. 

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Duty of Care in the Context of Regulatory Action?

Created: Monday, 01 October 2018 16:03


In the recent decision Daisley v Whangarei District Council [2018] NZHC 2211 the High Court dismissed an application for leave to bring a summary judgment application against the Whangarei District Council (Council) and Mr Peters. In the process of reaching this decision the High Court provided some interesting commentary surrounding local authority liability in relation to the duty of care owed to landowners when taking regulatory action. 

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