UnitedFuture against RMA reforms

September 12th, 2013 at 10:38 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

Two of the Government’s support parties have refused to back proposals to overhaul planning laws.

The Maori Party and UnitedFuture say a revamp of the Resource Management Act goes too far and no longer protects the environment.

The changes were announced by Environment Minister Amy Adams last month at the National Party’s annual conference. The Government wants to cut the cost of building and argues the present consenting processes take too long and are costly, slowing developments.

Adams wants to shake up part two of the , which puts in place environmental safeguards.

Without the minor party support, the Government no longer has the numbers to pass the legislation.

Maori party co-leader Tariana Turia and UnitedFuture leader Peter Dunne wrote to Adams to outline their concerns.

It seems a bit strange that it has taken four weeks for them to decide their stance.

The proposed law changes need either one of those two parties on board, or NZ First.  If they can’t get any of them, well that is how minority Government works – you don’t always get your way.

Tags: ,

40 Responses to “UnitedFuture against RMA reforms”

  1. Pete George (23,296 comments) says:

    I haven’t been involved but this seems to be consistent with UF environmental principles and in step with established party support.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 14 You need to be logged in to vote
  2. Ian McK (237 comments) says:

    Dunne was a mate of useless Palmer (RMA exponent), one of the old guard of the evil Lange regime. Seems he still carries a candle for their disgusting legislation . . . shame Peter, did not know you were greaser.

    Vote: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  3. seerob1946 (20 comments) says:

    The whole revision of RMA is all about fast tracking land to be available for an out of control city called Auckland which is being promoted at the expense of the rest of the country. The situation is ridiculous…

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 10 You need to be logged in to vote
  4. Rightandleft (654 comments) says:

    This is one of those rare times when I side with National over Peter Dunne.

    Vote: Thumb up 15 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  5. hj (6,697 comments) says:

    Word is that developers have been getting peed off as pesky other people interfere with the businessman’s right to build what he wants on his own property. We all know (or perhaps we don’t?) about lobbying, stacking (political parties) etc?

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 10 You need to be logged in to vote
  6. PaulL (5,983 comments) says:

    @hj: it’s not just businesspeople. I have some land that I’d like to build a house on, but despite said house being in the middle of 10 acres, apparently lots of people get to have a say over it. I can understand if you’re building on the boundary, looking into their backyards, or blocking their sunlight. I’m not sure that “I can see it” is a reason to object. I think lots of people are hoping the changes go through.

    Popular. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 33 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  7. kowtow (7,921 comments) says:

    Humans are part of the environment.

    Economic activity is good for humans.

    Economic activity is good for the environment.

    Vote: Thumb up 18 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  8. hj (6,697 comments) says:

    Comment from NZ Initiative (and Climate Science Rejects Coalition)
    As I see it at the moment, these are the two real battlegrounds to win in the public debate over the RMA:
    1) its purpose should be to promote the wellbeing of NZ’ers, not to sacrifice it; and
    2) economic development in the sense of productivity growth (or real GDP per capita growth), is not intrinsically at the expense of ‘the environment’, and was not in fact in the 20th century amongst the western world where the big shift has been from manufacturing and agriculture to services, and it is a myth that National intended the RMA to be anti-development; (to the contrary Simon Upton sold the Nats this pup on the grounds that it was permissive once his infamously unlimited environmental ‘bottom lines” were protected regardless of the cost to NZers wellbeing).
    Far too many environmentalists see property rights as the enemy of that which they hope to achieve rather than a crucial instrument for achieving conservational and environmental goals of a non-absolutist sort.
    In my view, the biggest impediment to improving the RMA is the ambiguity of its purpose statement (section 5 of the RMA). As long as its purpose statement is ambiguous, no one can tell what the problems are for private arrangements which it purports to be the remedy and therefore there is no accountability for success in the pursuit of its multiple purposes and, in indeed purposeful management is impossible. Any decision consistent with any one aspect of the purpose statement is formally as good as any other decision consistent with any other aspect. The choice between them depends on who wields the most power, case by case.
    Regards
    Dr Bryce Wilkinson
    Senior Fellow ….NZ Initiative ”

    in other words it all comes down to power (developer, bank, other peoples money, immigration policy) versus locals affected because it is in their space

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 12 You need to be logged in to vote
  9. peterwn (3,208 comments) says:

    Excuse for a snap election? May not work out for National, though. The political clout of all those in their own homes and who do not want to see the local environment change could be just too great.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  10. hj (6,697 comments) says:

    Humans are part of the environment.

    Economic activity is good for humans.

    Economic activity is good for the environment.
    …………………………
    the human economy is a subset of the earths economy… is quite a departure from views expressed here.
    industrial society facilitates wealth in goods and services but requires compartmentalisation due to the division of labour and population space meaning the societies we evolved in for hundreds of thousands of years cannot function
    Of white children captured by Native Americans when captured before pubescence and after 4 months or so (despite witnessing the savagery inflicted on their own families) the vast majority preferred the Indian life and those who were repatriated willingly spoke well of their captives.
    It is only the Bob Jones types and academic elites who experience freedoms over and above the restrictions p[laced on us by industrial society.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 14 You need to be logged in to vote
  11. JeffW (324 comments) says:

    Who needs jobs? Who needs more housing? I’m alright Jack.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  12. flipper (3,824 comments) says:

    hj (4,698) Says:
    September 12th, 2013 at 11:10 am
    Comment from NZ Initiative (and Climate Science Rejects Coalition)
    As I see it at the moment, these are the two real battlegrounds to win in
    *************
    CRAP, mega CRAP. from a dimwit.

    You clearly know nothing about TNZI’s antecedents, or the quality of those employed by TNZI. Treasury, the Reserve Bank and other banks, could not afford them.

    Go read Michael Bassett and Luke Malpass and then come back. Wilkinson has nailed it.

    Your comments, hj, recall your earlier idiotic postings on housing. If you want to exist in overpriced Auckland (North Shore, I think you said) that is your affair. But do NOT attempt to inflict your idiotic position on the rest of NZ.

    Vote: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  13. hj (6,697 comments) says:

    @PaulL
    the problem with the RMA argument is cherry picking and a one size fits all town plan. But if you don’t have a one size fits all plan you have the other end- property rights and negotiation. The reality is that professional well resourced developers are no match for Joe Public who happens to be an obstruction.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 6 You need to be logged in to vote
  14. hj (6,697 comments) says:

    flipper (2,390) Says:
    CRAP, mega CRAP. from a dimwit.
    ……..
    you always know when you’ve hit the button!

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 9 You need to be logged in to vote
  15. Redbaiter (8,000 comments) says:

    Dunne is just the worst POS in parliament.

    The Maori party are just gangsters and trying to preserve a system that allows their voters to blackmail anyone who wants to do anything in NZ, and this useless posturing bastard supports them.

    Please NZ voters, next election get this useless prick out of parliament.

    Vote: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  16. Griff (6,989 comments) says:

    http://business.scoop.co.nz/2013/09/12/rising-house-prices-not-a-natural-law/
    Wellington (12 September): Would-be home owners don’t have to resign themselves to ever increasing house prices according to the latest research from the New Zealand Initiative, which found three overseas markets who are getting it right.

    In brief, the research found:
    • In Germany and Switzerland, where the right to build is entrenched and local government funding is linked to population growth, house prices were stable but high;
    • In Texas, where projects outside of zoned municipal areas are run by private developers, house prices had been maintained at a low level for an extended period; and
    • Britain’s planning system, which shares many attributes with New Zealand, has delivered housing shortages, steep house price inflation, and smaller, more urban dwellings.

    Vote: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  17. hj (6,697 comments) says:

    Underlying the property rights argument is the notion that property begins and ends at defined boundaries and no one owns any part of the whole (like WTF does it have to do with you?). Under libertarianism people’s rights are defined by property ownership and labour for sale – those are chips people start playing the game with.

    The research project of which this seminar is a part aims “to explore how the Child Trust
    Fund might be developed in future, and, more generally, how a new, more egalitarian politics
    of ownership might be advanced.” I shall assume that policy-makers would like to progress
    beyond the modest Child Trust Fund introduced in the UK 2004 Budget to a more radical
    policy of giving each citizen a substantial endowment as proposed by various thinkers such as
    Ackerman and Le Grand. Some writers believe that funding citizen endowments via
    inheritance tax (IHT) is not politically feasible, on the grounds that IHT is amongst the least
    acceptable of taxes. This is an empirical question on which I take no view. Another paper to
    this conference will report whether the deliberative groups assembled for this project held, or
    sustained, that view. This paper explores whether a form of land taxation could substitute for
    IHT in this role.
    The structure of the paper is as follows. The next section, Classical arguments: Paine,
    Ricardo, the two Georges traces the classical arguments for land tax in the hands of its most
    persuasive proponents since Tom Paine. It shows how some of the classical arguments for
    inheritance tax also work as arguments for a land tax. Section 3, Could a land tax work? and
    section 4, Could it fund a Citizen’s Stake? address those two questions. I answer Yes to both.<</blockquote
    http://www.nuff.ox.ac.uk/politics/papers/…/McLean%20Land%20tax.pdf
    DPF favours land taxes

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  18. nickb (3,675 comments) says:

    Nice to see Dunne supports bloated and corrupt councils putting affordable housing out of the reach of Kiwis. But then should do we expect when he leaks confidential government documents in a honeytrap scheme and then sets his attack poodle loose to blame it on innocent, hardworking and politically neutral public servants?

    Vote: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  19. hj (6,697 comments) says:

    @ Griff

    …………………
    government funding is linked to population growth,

    What if policy reflects lobbying by business and the left-wing affect (strongly pro immigration views)
    Savings Working Group
    January 2011
    “The big adverse gap in productivity between New Zealand and other countries opened up from the 1970s to the early 1990s. The policy choice that increased immigration – given the number of employers increasingly unable to pay First-World wages to the existing population and all the capital requirements that increasing populations involve – looks likely to have worked almost directly against the adjustment New Zealand needed to make and it might have been better off with a lower rate of net immigration. This adjustment would have involved a lower real interest rate (and cost of capital) and a lower real exchange rate, meaning a more favourable environment for raising the low level of productive capital per worker and labour productivity. The low level of capital per worker is a striking symptom of New Zealand’s economic challenge.


    http://www.treasury.govt.nz/publications/reviews-consultation/savingsworkinggroup/pdfs/swg-report-jan11.pdf

    In Texas, where projects outside of zoned municipal areas are run by private developers, house prices had been maintained at a low level for an extended period; and

    “These predictions are borne out by the data. Using regression models, Saiz finds that local supply elasticities are determined both by his space-constraint measure and by an index of local building regulations, which was also developed at Wharton.2 Interestingly, the local-regulation index is itself strongly correlated with Saiz’s space-constraint index, as space-constrained cities tend to have stricter regulatory limits on new construction. This correlation provides compelling evidence for something that many housing economists have long suspected—local voters seek to protect the values of expensive homes by preventing new homes from being built.3 This finding may be puzzling to some, as it may be hard to imagine why land-constrained cities would need to implement further restrictions on new construction. However, some new development, perhaps via dense apartment buildings, is usually possible. Note that unlike a lot of correlations in economics, we can be reasonably sure that the direction of causality runs from space constraints to local regulations, not the other way around. After all, it is hard to create a new mountain, lake, or ocean through the political process.”
    http://realestateresearch.frbatlanta.org/rer/2010/06/explaining-local-supply-elasticities-quantifying-the-importance-of-space-limitations-in-housing-pric.html
    “But Glaeser notes that there are problems with Houston’s sprawl: It takes a large amount of energy to make the area’s humid, hot climate comfortable, and the city is built around the use of cars.
    “Houston is among the five worst American metropolitan areas, in terms of its carbon emissions,” he says.
    And he acknowledges that for people who are concerned with environmental issues, Houston presents a picture that is beyond dismaying.
    “I think horrendous wouldn’t be too strong a word,” Glaeser says.”
    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=112896915
    Letters to editor Houston Chronicle
    http://www.chron.com/opinion/outlook/article/Letters-Lanier-s-push-for-builders-1781173.php

    • Britain’s planning system, which shares many attributes with New Zealand, has delivered housing shortages, steep house price inflation, and smaller, more urban dwellings.

    You would have to question population policy before planning policy in the green and pleasant land?

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  20. slightlyrighty (2,499 comments) says:

    The other day Metiria Turei was lambasted for saying she wants houses devalued,and rightly so. What she, and many others fail to realise is that the unavailability of land and the compliance cost associated with acts such as the RMA actually increase housing costs.

    Vote: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  21. s.russell (1,580 comments) says:

    I do not agree with Dunne’s position, or his waiting till well after the proposals have gone public to squelch them – but it is smart politics on his part. The “outdoors” lobby is a key part of Dunne’s party base, and some, whilst otherwise sympathetic to National, get very riled by any threat to things like a tunnel spoiling their view on the Routeburn, or noisy cyclists riding past their favorite fishing spot etc.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  22. hj (6,697 comments) says:

    Discover the news that impacts you and create more successful PR campaigns with the help of Fuseworks media analysis tools. Analyse your results by volume, sentiment, themes and source.
    http://fuseworksmedia.com/nz/media-monitoring/news-analytics

    note how the Savings Working Group report got dumped.
    note how the Productivty Commision covers itself with a fig leaf “we can find no evidence that immigration contributes to house price increases.

    “PAUL – Well, Auckland – there’s an agglomeration effect, so the bigger Auckland becomes, there more attractive it becomes. It becomes more attractive economically, but it also becomes more attractive as a place to live. And so we’re seeing the sort of perimeters of New Zealand, the regions, beginning to flat-line, so they’re not growing, and we’re now beginning to see the first of regions beginning to decline.
    Q+A
    JESSICA MUTCH INTERVIEWS PAUL SPOONLEY
    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1207/S00280/qa-jessica-mutch-interviews-paul-spoonley.htm

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3 You need to be logged in to vote
  23. Griff (6,989 comments) says:

    Immigration: increase the population to expand the economy.
    Places even more stress on the infrastructure that we are struggling to develop now.
    Expanding layers of law around land use building construction and zoning forces us into a rule bending parody of what we would like to live in.
    Bureaucracy by its very nature has greater inertia against change the larger in becomes as well as the more obvious direct costs it inflicts.
    Immigration fueling growth is a ponzy scam.
    We are using the resultant expansion in the economy to fund the costs inherent in the population we have now.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  24. thedavincimode (6,589 comments) says:

    So, Dunney was sat down by his former boss Palmer to have the facts of life explained to him. I wonder how compelling he found Palmer’s argument that the change would see ten years of case law go out the window. That is, after all, a compelling reason to never change the law.

    Is Dunney competing with Brendan Horan for Mr Most Pointless?

    Vote: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  25. hj (6,697 comments) says:

    With Auckland having defined a boundary, edge or bottom line (however one may wish to describe it) (the MUL now adopted in the Auckland Plan), and as instructed by Parliament during a period of rapidly increasing land and house prices, it would seem that for a range of reasons (including as indentified in the Productivity Commission report), the market has not provided the affordable housing people need. This raises the question of course, is the problem with the planning, or what has been happening in the market place, including in the lead up to the GFC, and with the global banking sector clearly at least a significant part of the issue?
    It seems most unlikely to me that our planners and policy makers, transportation and infrastructure engineers, and local body politicians have all got it so wrong in the past 15 or more years that the “conventional wisdom” underpinning a containment approach is in fact fundamentally flawed, just as it would be to suggest the market should now be left to determine the location and distribution of future urban development in the result.

    Martin Williams
    Secretary
    RMLA

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  26. Nigel Kearney (914 comments) says:

    I’m in Dunne’s electorate and it’s mostly homeowners – the ones who vote for him are anyway. Using legislation and council rules to artificially suppress supply and keep prices high is very much in the interest of the people Dunne needs votes from to stay in Parliament.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  27. Paulus (2,556 comments) says:

    Understand the Bill has not even been drafted yet.

    Dunne still smarting from the Andrea affair whatever that was, and is trying to show what a prick he actually is so that National will not seriously stand against him in the election.

    The Maori Party are being typically Maori – all for me first.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  28. annie (540 comments) says:

    I’m in Dunne’s electorate, and I would have voted for him anyway, tactically. But one of the things I like about him is his usual good sense and moderate views, the Vance prima donna issue aside.

    I was uneasy with the RMA changes as proposed. There is no doubt the law needs to be changed to make the granting of consents easier, but the proposed changes go too far for my liking. Dunne will certainly get my vote now, even if National fields a candidate in Ohariu.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 10 You need to be logged in to vote
  29. burt (7,994 comments) says:

    There has been strong nor-west winds the last few days… southerlies will be back in a few days and the wind-sock will swing back the other way.

    Vote: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  30. Alan Wilkinson (1,848 comments) says:

    The RMA is a godsend for useless pricks who want to stop everyone else doing anything useful. Obviously that is Dunne’s natural habitat.

    Vote: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  31. hj (6,697 comments) says:

    She cited a Statistics New Zealand survey that revealed $800 million worth of projects had stalled over two years because applicants found the RMA procedures too frustrating.

    That’s the same figure ($800 million) as Harcourts Shanghai were showcasing.

    The successful North Shore-based company’s international marketing
    initiative is focused on presenting a collection of more than 50
    residential, lifestyle, rural and commercial property and development
    projects from around New Zealand to Chinese millionaires and billionaires
    interested in investing and/or immigrating here.

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU1008/S00764/harcourts-showcase-in-china-generating-interest.htm
    It shows what Kiwis can do if we really want to move the country forward; build wealth, stimulate GDP, squeeze infrastructure and housing! Vote National!

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 4 You need to be logged in to vote
  32. MT_Tinman (3,043 comments) says:

    nickb, “attack poodle”?

    More like “attack canary”.

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  33. NK (1,128 comments) says:

    This is absolutely hilarious from yesterday’s Herald:

    Mr Dunne said that in the 20 years since the RMA was created, the environment was in a worse state by nearly every measure, and government’s proposals to facilitate development would make matters worse.”

    Forget the last 10 words, and just focus on the ones in bold.

    So why do we have the RMA then? The environment is worse. Housing is unaffordable since its introduction. It holds up economic activity for no environmental benefit; actually, it holds up economic activity yet the environment is in a worse state!!

    Scrap the RMA. It serves no purpose.

    Vote: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  34. Alan Wilkinson (1,848 comments) says:

    @NK, well said. Dunne is a moron with a mouth – nothing else.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2 You need to be logged in to vote
  35. PaulL (5,983 comments) says:

    @NK:
    1. If Dunne were right, the RMA should go because it isn’t working
    2. I doubt he’s right. I’d be very interested in what measures he thinks the environment is getting worse on, I’m pretty sure it’s not true. The only one really anybody could point to would be “climate change”, which the RMA has little to do with

    Muppet.

    Vote: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  36. Alan Wilkinson (1,848 comments) says:

    This is what the drivelling Green idiots have done even to Germany:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/comment/ambroseevans_pritchard/10303285/Romantic-Germany-risks-economic-decline-as-green-dream-spoils.html

    The last thing we need is support for them from a platitudinal twit.

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  37. hj (6,697 comments) says:

    Wasn’t this the Green Party’s idea last election and what is the point of our worker increase policies (apart from boost the property market and flow ons)?

    “The assumption was that Germany would gain a “first-mover” lead in renewables, reaping the reward later. They overlooked the Chinese, who copied the technology. Chinese firms gouged the German home market with the aid of cheap labour, a cheap yuan, cheap state credit and a global trade system that let them get away with it.
    The German solar industry has been smashed. QCells, Conergy, Solon and Solarworld have all gone bust or faced debt restructuring. The subsidies for feed-in tariffs have been leaked abroad. Eight of the world’s 10 biggest solar firms are now Chinese.”
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/comment/ambroseevans_pritchard/10303285/Romantic-Germany-risks-economic-decline-as-green-dream-spoils.html

    Vote: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  38. 2boyz (255 comments) says:

    I’m sure Dunne will come around, a nice posting to New York or something similar should get him across the line!

    Vote: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1 You need to be logged in to vote
  39. Simon (712 comments) says:

    Peter Dunne is the Mugabe of NZ politics.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote
  40. Black with a Vengeance (1,634 comments) says:

    I’d get the GCSB to put cameras in Dunnes dunny.

    Hopefully they’ll catch him cracking one off and have him over a barrel for all manner of shonky legislation to get rammed home.

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0 You need to be logged in to vote

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.