In the latest skirmish, the Mackenzie cubicle dairy applicants — or, as they prefer to say, ‘covered farms’ — have turned an apparent setback into a tactical mini-triumph

The Environmental Defence Society was “gobsmacked” on October 1. A fortnight later, when I catch up with its chairman Gary Taylor, he’s still carefully choosing his words.

When — having been pinged by the government for $2.6 million costs — the ‘cubicle’ or ‘covered farm’ applicants withdrew their called-in resource consent applications, Environment Minister Nick Smith said they were “gaming” the resource consent process. Strong words, from the mouth of a Minister, but he never spoke truer ones.

The story broke and ran and ran last December and into the new year. The government finally decided to ‘call in’ some of the applications, for effluent discharge, for hearing by a board of inquiry. The applicants, thwarted by the cost recovery, withdrew the applications, and retreated to the moral high ground: they had wanted a debate, they said, it was a shame we didn’t have it, and it was all down to public hysteria, whipped up by the Greens.

Their withdrawal fitted their methods of proceeding to date — with different types of resource consent application, for land use, irrigation, and effluent discharge, filed piecemeal, making it hard to scrutinise the proposal as a whole.

This is not, in itself, wholly the applicants’ fault: they filed stuff in the proper places, albeit at different times. But the fractured RMA process, while no doubt inconveniencing and costing them to some extent, has helped them, too.

Their sudden enthusiasm for a debate, and claim to have been denied it, sat ill with the fact that land use consents had proceeded under the radar, unnotified. The land use consents were by then under judicial review, with EDS as the plaintiff, that being the only way left to challenge them.

That was in March. Richard Peacocke, who seems to be the main spokesperson for the three companies involved, said the country was not ready for this farming innovation yet; they would try again, in two or three years.

In fact, it took two or three months. In May, new applications for land use resource consent, and certificates of compliance (a separate requirement) were filed, while judicial review was still proceeding, on the already-granted applications. According to the Waitaki District Council, these were “basically the same” as the former proposals.

Who knew? I have a copy of the consent memorandum, filed in the Christchurch High Court, dated July 23. It looked like a short-term win for the EDS, and was reported as such.

It records that earlier decisions to grant certificates of compliance, and process the land use consents unnotified, were invalid, because the Waitaki District Council officer responsible lacked proper delegated authority. It says the resulting certificates and consents are to be “quashed and/or set aside”. The first defendant, the Waitaki District Council, is directed to reconsider its decisions. “The Second, Third and Fourth Defendants [Mr Peacocke, et al] agree to advise the Plaintiff [EDS] in the event of their wishing to reactivate the underlying applications.”

It is, with the benefit of hindsight, carefully worded. Purportedly, the Council would reconsider its unlawful decisions (on the existing applications?); these were on hold; and EDS would be advised of any change. Meanwhile, though, there were fresh applications. The defendants signed up to an agreement to quash and/or set aside certificates of compliance, probably knowing, by then, that the Council was considering new ones, and the likelihood was they’d be granted.

Which they were: “certificates of compliance for the projects have now been granted by the Waitaki District Council for a range of farming activities, including the establishment of dairy sheds and their ongoing expansion” reports EDS. Whereupon Mr Peacocke resurfaced, announcing that to preserve the applicants’ position, covered farming consents would again be sought for his Mackenzie Basin property. Although again, at the applicants’ request (confirmed to me by the Council), the land use consent applications have been put on hold, indefinitely.

Huh? Never mind. Here’s the key point. The applicants, Mr Peacocke at their head as spokesperson, are playing their opponents, like fish on a line.

They signed a settlement, and promised the court to tell the EDS about any intention to revive the proposals. They’d already breathed new life into them, though. New applications were going along, in parallel. Or at least, the certificate of compliance parts were, the remainder being once again on hold.

According to EDS chairman Gary Taylor, this “made the agreement redundant”.

“In my opinion the applicants have acted disingenuously and in breach of the spirit, if not the letter, of the agreement to consult,” he says. “In my opinion, that process was conducted in a … [and it’s here that he pauses for a very long moment] … tricky way.”

But is EDS any worse off than it was, other than feeling a bit, well, silly? This is a mind game, mostly, surely: it doesn’t alter the substance of the position a whole lot, from that presented to the court by consent of all parties.

It declares that this is war, although, on its face, a civilly conducted one. It sets collaborative efforts against “tricky” and not quite so tricky adversary, an example of the latter being rumours that high country farmers will attend this meeting, and try to shout it down. Like the applicants’ latest manoeuvres, that would speak volumes, in more ways than one. Factionalised hysteria, anyone?

It also makes it harder to grasp what the position actually is. Mr Peacocke is going forward, he tells us, to preserve his position. Except, um, he isn’t — simultaneously putting on the brakes, until such time as it suits him to go forward a bit more.

One thing the new applications will do is bring the case under the jurisdiction of the 2009 RMA changes. There is, presumably, some perceived advantage in this, perhaps the provision that says different types of called-in consents may be dealt with together, so that the applicants would only be paying costs once.

Gary Taylor complains that none of this — this business of filing applications and then suspending or withdrawing them, to avoid inconvenience — is a proper use of the RMA process. The RMA does provide for time limits to be extended or waived, but this indefinite suspension is a bit dodgy. The applicants, he says, are just filing now to protect their position, with a view to possible future changes to the district plan.

EDS is still considering returning to court on other matters, reviving disputes that lapsed when the case settled.

It is also calling for the land use consent applications to be publicly notified this time, opening them up to submissions. The Council’s planning manager told me in August that this would happen.

If Ministers were concerned enough to call in the effluent discharge applications before, logically, one should expect them to do so again, whenever that may be. All of the things Nick Smith said earlier still hold. It is still a proposal “of extraordinary scale”, a “completely foreign farming style in New Zealand”, the Mackenzie country is no less “fragile” and “iconic” than it was six months ago, and so on.

They will have jurisdiction over land use, too, this time, and discretion to decide to deal with land use and effluent discharge together.

However, the applicants are gambling on a change of public mood, long term. They’ve said as much, and now, they’re setting out to achieve it. The earlier call-in was a wholly political publicity-driven decision. If the media and public eventually tire of iterations of this on-again off-again, confusing, in the end quite boring story … well, the result may not be the same.

What looked, briefly, like one for conservation has turned out to be one for the high country farmers. Game on — but not quite set and match, just yet.

Comments (21)

by Mark Wilson on October 16, 2010
Mark Wilson

Claire, you leftys just don't get it. The left needs to get out more and stop talking just to itself. Alternative ideas are not cancer causing.

The EDS is an extreme left wing organisation that internally allows no alternative world view to one that maintains that progress is bad, business is worse and the world can be saved by destroying the economy except for the handcrafts industry which can generate sufficent wealth to keep the hospitals and schools open. 

In the wealth generating section of the economy serious competition and non fragile debate produces highly competitive people and entitys that can easily roll over those who live in PC incubated environments. Can Gary Taylor put his hands on $2.6 million? Does it not occur to him that people who can just might be smarter than him?

Of course the EDS got out manouvered and we will see cubicle farming (or whatever spin they put on it to keep it under the rader.) Personally I am totally opposed to it but  it is going to take someone a lot more competitive that Gary Taylor to stop it.

by Claire Browning on October 16, 2010
Claire Browning

Claire, you leftys just don't get it.

Well, someone sure doesn't get it.

you leftys ...

Wrong. Wrong about Pundit, me, EDS, the Greens, and pretty much everything else.

In the wealth generating section of the economy serious competition and non fragile debate produces highly competitive people and entitys ...

Though sadly, not ones who can spell, it seems, or get their heads around more than two ideas at once.

Can Gary Taylor put his hands on $2.6 million?

Irrelevant. Irrelevant anyway, but especially since it seems, in this instance, that the applicants couldn't, either.

Now we've cleared that out of the way: what's your actual point?

by Mark Wilson on October 16, 2010
Mark Wilson

Pundit is not left wing? 

Have you by any chance looked at your members self generated bios? Have you by any chance read your own?

As to the Greens, they declare themselves left wing - so they don't know what their political views are and you do? 

I am sorry you couldn't comprehend what my point was. I will try and simplify for you. EDS and Gary Taylor don't have what it takes to win this battle.

And Gary Taylor's not being able to put up the level of money his opposition can is very much relevant. One it means they will be still standing when he is crying into his beer and it also means that they have a track record he can't match.

As the great philosopher Damon Runyon said "The race doesn't always go the the fast and the strong, but that's the way to bet." 

I apologise for the spelling. I forgot that I come from an environment where the ideas are important, not the grammar.

 

by Andrew Geddis on October 16, 2010
Andrew Geddis

@ Mark: "Pundit is not left wing? Have you by any chance looked at your members self generated bios? Have you by any chance read your own?"

From Claire's Pundit profile: "Claire is a Wairarapa-based food gardener and writer. She is a former Ministry of Justice and Law Commission employee, and spent 3 years editing Brookers’ criminal portfolio. She has been a member of the Adams on Criminal Law author team since 2006. Between 1998 and 2008, she wrote for the Criminal Reports of New Zealand."

I'm wondering if it was the connection with Brookers that tipped Mark off to Claire's radical communist agenda, or perhaps it was her home in the Wairarapa ... aka the Maoist capital of the Peoples' Republic of Aotearoa.

by stuart munro on October 17, 2010
stuart munro

@ Mark,

an extreme left wing organisation that internally allows no alternative world view to one that maintains that progress is bad, business is worse and the world can be saved by destroying the economy

I think perhaps you are oversimplifying. I can remember the same kinds of agit-prop coming out of the Fishing Industry with respect to Orange Roughy quotas. Business knew best. But that business deregulated itself to the point of commercial extinction.

It is probably true that the resources consumed in permit disputes would be better spent on either mitigation or developing more sophisticted use models - but the folk with the money have, as you point out, a lot of influence on the process,and they generally seem to choose the easiest rather than the most integrated solution - the one that's best for all parties.

Let us imagine that the EDS took a time out: what process or promises would you replace them with, that would maximise the productive use and minimise or contain the impact on the environment, other landusers, and so forth? As a 'wealth creator' I'm sure you're full of ideas...

by Mark Wilson on October 17, 2010
Mark Wilson

Stuart you make a fair point that with business permanently involved in a dog eat dog world it cannot be allowed unrestricted behaviour because it can end up eating its young, so to speak. Goldman Sacs comes to mind.

However the cost of the abuse by self apointed, unaccountable and supercilious groups like EDS is something the country cannot afford. I mean $2.6 milltion and counting? Plus millions more. The left have used the RMA to stop projects not on their merit but because they decided that their luddite world view was the only legitmate one and they would try to bankrupt anyone who tried to create something. They were the ones who dug its grave and as the pendulum has swung back they are the ones to blame for its welcome demise.  

I applaud your view that "It is probably true that the resources consumed in permit disputes would be better spent on either mitigation or developing more sophisticted use models"

We need an all out war model as a last resort if no middle path can be found but there should be a low cost, time limited zero sum type negotiation process between competing parties available. Hopefully this government will provide one.     

The greatest blind spot the left has is their total lack of understanding of the concept of the law of unintended consequences.

The applicants have spent millions on this. If there had been a low cost option, and they had lost, they would have walked away and spent their capital elsewhere. Now the only rational economic direction left to them is to make it happen. No one walks away from that amount of money.

Claire is correct that they have set themselves up to subvert the hugely flawed process. They will scale the proposal down and work on parts of the process that EDS can't or are not aware are available for influence. The project may be shifted to a more acceptable area. Time is on their side and they only need the smallest foot in the door. There goes the McKenzie basin!

My money is on the money winning.

EDS deserves to get the credit for the result.

Andrew is Claire left wing? Let me count the ways.

I readily acknowledge Claire's very considerable intellect but the jury is still out on how she stands up to incoming fire which is a useful guide to left wingery. 

Her acknowledged work history is all in non competitive areas. Worked for the Government - not a good  start! And lets face it "food gardener" is not exaclty the bear pit at the Chicago Mercentile Exchange. Not conclusive evidence by any means but do I see a whiff of smoke at the end of the Glock?

My main evidence is her own articles. Which I had actually read before I make the claim of the terrible crime of left wingery!

In particular read her articles on Conservation, with particular reference to the one on Tim Flannery. 

"The roles have reversed, then; now it is we who are on the back foot. Who will be at the forefront of the new wave, the green revolution? Will we cede that power to the developing world; and if we do, will that be a conscious choice on our part, or just slackness? Either way, the irony is huge: if New Zealand loses in this race, it will be only because we were so worried about losing, we didn't dare try to win.

That was me speaking"

Not exactly a right or centerist point of view is it?

I could add many more but you get the picture.

As to the Wairarapa, you know that that and Nelson are where you retire to to avoid those nasty cities. And people like me. In fact now i think about it their realtors should have to pay me royalties on sales.

by Andrew Geddis on October 17, 2010
Andrew Geddis

"Not exactly a right or centerist point of view is it?"

So it wasn't Claire's bio that makes her "left wing" after all, despite this being what you said? Instead it's her claim that New Zealand needs to be at the forefront of a developing business opportunity, least we cede competitive advantage to newly emerging competitors in the international market?

Do you actually even know what "left wing" means, Mark, or do you have the equivalent of bloggers tourettes syndrome, where you just blurt out random accusations?

by Claire Browning on October 17, 2010
Claire Browning

Have you by any chance looked at your members self generated bios? Have you by any chance read your own?

I have Mark, yes. I really can't be held responsible though, for whatever simple-minded inferences you may choose to draw from it.

As to the Wairarapa, you know that that and Nelson are where you retire to to avoid those nasty cities ...

Really, I'd prefer my life off-line to stay that way. Thank you for refocusing the discussion on the posts, even if only to save yourself from looking silly. But since you raise it Mark, I'm also a Wellingtonian. Once again: binary argument, epic fail.

I readily acknowledge Claire's very considerable intellect but the jury is still out on how she stands up to incoming fire which is a useful guide to left wingery ...

Oh I see ... this is a test of character. And cvs, apparently. Let's explore work history then, right here on Pundit. Is that "non-competitive", too? How many posts have you had published? Want to give us that as a percentage?

Now, the EDS and Gary Taylor: another useful measure of everybody's character.

Taylor is standing up for something you, yourself, claim to believe in ("Personally, I am totally opposed to it [cubicle farming] ..."). And yet, you would rather spend a hundred words or so fantasising about his politics, and pissing all over him on that basis.

I have no idea what his politics are, actually, nor do I particularly care. And you may well be right, about the fiscal handicap. But I will back heart and brains and civility every time, over your sad brand of machismo.

So far, where the applicants have succeeded, they've done it not by a straight contest on the merits, but by sneaking around; we have yet to find out whether they're doing so unlawfully. Shine a light on their activities, and they scuttle off under a rock somewhere, bleating about unfairness.

Remind you of anyone?

[PS. Oh, and another basic error of fact. "I mean $2.6 million and counting?". Nothing to do with the EDS. That bill came from the government. Your, um, right wing development-friendly government.]
by stuart munro on October 17, 2010
stuart munro

@ Mark,

Let me go through your post a little, because you seem to have forgotten to arrive at a credible process model.

When you describe the EDS as self-appointed, you are talking about a group formed in response to what they consider to be important issues. While you may not endorse their viewpoint, grassroots (or tussock maybe) organisations like this are necessary and proper to the function of a democracy, at least if we may believe de Tocqueville.

The process that is usually arrived at to avoid zero sum contestation is industry protocols. These vary considerably in quality - the best would perhaps start by getting an ag science group and a greater environment group to hash out the areas of agreement, where things must be limited or controlled, what must be forbidden - and what could be done better to improve outcomes for all parties. There needs to be a sanctions regime too, for those who agree, then break their agreement.

The greatest blind spot the left has is their total lack of understanding of the concept of the law of unintended consequences.

That's funny - the left say the same about you. Much as I enjoy these pithy aphorisms - this one was a favorite of Frank Herbert, the author of Dune - these rhetorical ornaments add nothing to your case.

The applicants have spent millions on this... it is true perhaps. But if a binding decision were made that rendered their intentions unprofitable, they would write those millions off as a sunk cost, and move on. Again, as Claire pointed out, the EDS did not create the process.

More probably, a minimum of sensible accomodations could be reached - a mixed farming model that includes grazing and shelter might properly improve the conditions for livestock and attain most of the efficiencies that farmers seek. There isn't enough water in the MacKenzie to simply allow open access to all dairy - perhaps the dairy conversions in the area must be limited to a % of the ground, or the water. This being so, improved lower impact dryland farming models should be an important part of the strategy for resolving the dispute.

Your attack on Claire is a little one-dimensional - it is certainly true that she is to the left of you - but so is Attila the Hun. Perhaps most surprising is how strenuously she resists the label - I would have thought being environmentally and socially responsible nothing to be ashamed of - rather the reverse in fact.

But in labelling her as left you are being very one-dimensional. The environmental view looks for a sustainable future, it is not left per se beyond looking for sustainable social models. The new green revolution, if it ever comes about, has as much potential be as technocratic and commercially driven as the industrial revolution - which was hardly the lowpoint of global capitalism.

So maybe you should ease up a little on the ad hominem...

by Mark Wilson on October 17, 2010
Mark Wilson

Claire, with the greatest respect, your argument is illogical and lacks a sense of humour. The lack of sense of humour is definitely a solid lefty trait. The Wairarapa bit was a joke so the epic fail is on you I am afraid. 

Your and Andrews response does, while only anecdotal evidence, support my propostion that the left are nowhere near as mentally tough as the right. There is no left wing blogger in NZ that takes anywhere near the heat that Whale Oil does yet he just soaks up the abuse. Look across all the left wing blogs in NZ and see where you left wingers throw your toys out of the cot at the slightest provocation. Reread all the threads that have been tarnished by my presence and look at the number of times I have been denigrated and insulted, including your last. Yet my toys are untouched. 

Yes standing strong under incoming is a legitimate test of character. Those who can create wealth and those who can't take on lesser challenges.

Now the illogical bit -

1 - I enjoy posting my two cents worth on Pundit because it does allow at least some dissent, unlike most left wing blogs which only allow self validation, and I believe that vigorous  debate is actually healthy and contains the possibility of better understanding, even allowing for the left's fragility. I am fully aware that sooner or later you will kick me off but if the left won't even allow the right to have an opinion then how can they beat us if they don't know about our deluded world view?

How many jobs for others one has created or how much foreign exchange one has earned for one's country is relevant to a CV, how much wealth one has consumed or how many posts on Pundit not so much. Anyway, Pundit would not post a right wing view because it would be "too machismo".

2 - "But I will back heart and brains and civility every time, over your sad brand of machismo."

I was not aware that the right wing were excluded from having heart and brains but I learn all the time. Of course the weight of history, and in time this case, provides clear evidence to the contrary based on who wins most of the time. (See Damon Runyon.)

3 - "PS. Oh, and another basic error of fact. "I mean $2.6 million and counting?". Nothing to do with the EDS. That bill came from the government. Your, um, right wing development-friendly government.]

Ah sorry but the defence were put to that cost by the actions of EDS not the government.   

4 - "Shine a light on their activities, and they scuttle off under a rock somewhere, bleating about unfairness.

Remind you of anyone?"

Factually incorrect. At no stage have I bleated or scuttled.

5 - I don't regard a few mild chips as "pissing on Gary Taylor" and if he thinks so he should head off to the nursing home. EDS have no problem trying to bankrupt someone trying to do something that they genuinely believe would be good for the country (their project will pay a hell of a lot more tax than EDS and its members do). EDS's methods some would actually see as pretty dodgy practice.

Stuart, re "the attacks on Claire" the record stands for itself, my comments have only broached her left wingering, she has nailed me on all sorts of crimes against humanity and other "epic fails." 

Re your comment that "it is not left per se beyond looking for sustainable social models." The left as a block (I am happy to exclude present company) in the last 120 years have caused the death of many more tens of millions than even the greatest right wing lunatic Hitler could. Having finally accepted (although the NZ Greens haven't according to their material) that the socialist model doesn't work, or at the very least cannot be sold to the average punter) the green movement is hijacking the environmental movement to halt the progress that pays the bills. The complete irony of that is that, as according to the immutable law of unintended consequences, the people they claim to represent will, as always in the past, be the poor losers. The right will adapt and be fine - the left not so much.    

 

by Andrew Geddis on October 17, 2010
Andrew Geddis

Mark,

Here's how it works.

When you make substantive points arguing policy, you will be responded to in kind.

When you make ad hominem remarks or facile claims about what "left wingers" believe or do, you will be responded to in kind.

If you continue to do so, then your comments will just get deleted without further niceties.

Live with these rules, and you'll have a place on Pundit. Don't, and you don't.

by stuart munro on October 17, 2010
stuart munro

@ Mark,

It rather depends upon what you call the left. Stalin & Mao were certainly responsible for plenty of carnage - but they were not exactly model left leaders. The same can be said of the post-colonial communist regimes, like Vietnam - for which communism was principally a vehicle for breaking the grip of French colonialism. In these countries the revolutionary culture could have taken many forms, communism was simply the style of revolt, as Islam was the style of revolt in Iran, and Catholicism was the style in Ireland. For these three, the major issue was colonisation or foreign control.

But one of the major mistakes of totalitarian leaders was to decide that method, and humanity, were unimportant. And it is a comparable error to conflate, for example, New Zealanders with a less aggressive preference for development than yours, with the routine brutality of Pol Pot. They are ultimatelty quite different things. The difference between humane and reasonable political processes and brutal and oppressive ones is more important than the left/right divide.

by Claire Browning on October 18, 2010
Claire Browning

Aw, Stuart after I teased you about the black knight, and everything.

Perhaps most surprising is how strenuously she resists the label - I would have thought being environmentally and socially responsible nothing to be ashamed of - rather the reverse in fact.

I strenuously resist it just as a factual matter. Doesnt matter if its an insult, or an accolade: either way, I cant lay claim to the label, and the same would be true of a right wing label. Its not resistance to being labelled; its that in my case, quite simply, neither is true.

Mark, thanks for elucidating. Very helpful, thank you -- unintentionally, I'm sure.

While we're trading aphorisms, you know what they say, about sound and fury.

by stuart munro on October 18, 2010
stuart munro

@ Claire,

I notice that after your Black Knight, and Andrew's Argument, Michael Laws suddenly rediscovered Mr Creosote.

Perhaps that was punishment enough ;)

by Claire Browning on October 18, 2010
Claire Browning

Well, it is true that this was a bit of a backhanded compliment, all things considered.

However, I do not want to dissuade Michael in general from lifting his ideas off Pundit, and letting that set the tone of debate. It could only improve things, on the whole, if maybe not quite on this occasion.

by stuart munro on October 18, 2010
stuart munro

And of course I have another agenda - for I am left wing, though somewhat conservative and green.

Mark's comments probably contain a healthy degree of sincerity. Shakespeare was condemning the narrative value of simple passion with his 'sound and fury line' and as a master narrator or dramatist he had himself progressed far beyond it. But perhaps we see a little of it in Titus Andronicus. It is not such a bad place to start.

by Simon on October 18, 2010
Simon

Claire,

Well, in a post with 16 comments, one of which is a "Godwin", where do I start?

Anyway, I admit I was wrong in predicting that EDS would not have no success with their judicial review of the McKenzie District Council  'cubicle' dairying land use consents. Though I was very surprised that the MDC was incompetent enough to NOT have correctly delegated its s 104 RMA decision-making power to the staff member who signed off the consents!   I got in touch with an old work colleague who is still at Environment Canterbury who said they were, sadly, not surprised at MDC!

Maybe that time Nick Smith was casting nasturtiums about the capabilities of Buller District Council and its capability to look at the Mohikinui Dam, he should have aimed at McKenzie instead! I wonder if the McKenzie councillors understood the need for delegation of powers vested in them by the RMA?

Although the High Court voided the consents (well they had to, getting the delegation wrong, is pretty much a fundamental error) I am not sure that is what EDS wanted. I thought their goal should have been to get the non-notification and grant decision cancelled, and replaced with a decision to publicly notify them. Which then opens them up for submissions from ENGOs, and suggests they should be decided on by the same commissioners as the related water take permits. Councils can use s 91 of the RMA to 'round up' all consent applications with inter-related effects BUT that requires someone to actively 'turn their mind to it', and if your management direction is 'meet timeframes, keep processing costs down, and whatever you do don't  recommend notification', then council officers won't utilise s 91. In my experience, most consents staff would not have even needed to read s 91.

So it is (or was) quite common for some proposals to creep in stages consent by consent non-notified through the consent application process. They tended to be smaller projects. On a larger project, the consultants for the applicant would know the whole project would be notified so they may as well get all the consent applications and relevant AEEs prepared at the same time. Which is also easier project management. Of course they reserved the right to disagree with the view of the council on what the whole suite of or extent or number of consents that was required.

Mr Peacocke's proposal is smallish, (well compared to Central Plains Water) so trying to incrementally gain the various consents does not really surprise me. I am not saying its okay or its good practice, I am just saying in my experience thats what happens.

Similarly, I am not surprised at Peacocke quickly lodging 'new' land use applications with McKenzie DC that are exactly the same as the voided consents.  I am afraid the RMA works on 'form over substance', and the 'new' applications must be considered on their merits AND no doubt under the new 'simplified and stream lined' notification sections which favour non-notification. A lot of consultants will have withdrawn applications made before the RMSSA commenced and lodged identical 'new' applications afterwards in order to avoid notification. Consultants have been doing this around plan change dates for years. Gary Taylor will know this as well as anyone. Again, I am not saying its good practice, its just what happens.

Ultimately, these processing issues, while important, are not as important as the district-wide and cumulative issue of the effects of agricultural intensification in the McKenzie Basin on water quality. Might save that, and some thoughts on Mr Peacocke's statements for a later comment.

 

 

 

by Skinman on October 19, 2010
Skinman

Hi Claire

Don't know if you've seen Richard Peacocke's comments here http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/lifestyle/mainlander/4190914/Division-bells-ring-in-basin?comment_msg=posted#post_comment. In my

Are you interested in taking Richard up on his kind offer and visiting one of these farms?

by Claire Browning on October 19, 2010
Claire Browning

Simon, on a small matter of detail, it was the WDC, not MDC. Waitaki, not Mackenzie.

[PS. It seems this is going to be the new tangent, by the way. "Oh but it's not really the Mackenzie country ..."]

'Skinman', there is nothing new in that latest comment from Richard. Don't know if you've seen my earlier posts, here and here in particular, plus half a dozen others.

And yes, I will be down on the ground myself at the end of next month, funds willing. Will Richard?

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