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Wild Weather and Resource Consent Requirements

By Anna Bensemann, Senior Planner, Baseline Group Marlborough | Jan 23, 2023

Emergency powers under the Resource Management Act (RMA) allow for works to be undertaken without a resource consent in certain circumstances. With the wild weather hitting New Zealand recently, these provisions are sure to be exercised, but Section 330 of the RMA does not provide carte blanche ability to start moving debris or altering waterways by any person who considers there is a risk. The provisions contain key features to control who, and when, emergency powers can be exercised.

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Fundamental Culture Shift in New Zealand Planning Legislation.

By Anna Bensemann Senior Planner, Baseline Group | Nov 22, 2022

There is a general shift in New Zealand legislation to better honour the partnership principles between the Crown and Iwi, embodied in the Treaty of Waitangi. Central
Government driven National Policy Statements (NPS) for both fresh water and highly productive soils illustrate this fundamental change and arguably have directed some of the most significant changes to compliance measures for modern farming.

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Crunch Time For New Freshwater Legislation

By Oscar Savage, Graduate Planner, Baseline Group | Nov 22, 2022

In 2020, Central Government released an abundance of Freshwater Policies, including National Policy Statements (NPS-FW) and National Environmental Standard for Freshwater (NES-FW), and addendums to the RMA bringing in Freshwater Farm Plans and Stock Exclusion Regulations. As we near the end of 2022, push has come to shove, and these regulations are starting to take effect. Understanding what the raft of regulations will mean for farmers is important to ensure regulatory compliance for our agricultural sector.

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Proposed Selwyn District Plan Update

By Thomas Holmes, Planner, Baseline Group | Nov 21, 2022

Selwyn District Council’s proposed District Plan was notified on 5 October 2020 and is now nearly two years into the consultation process, with hearings now complete. Council have delayed the release of the fully Operative Plan until 20 August 2023 to align with the decision on the new legislation required by Central Government relating to medium density standards.

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Highly Productive Soils – Big Picture Thinking vs Private Landowners Needs

By Anna Bensemann, Senior Planner, Baseline Group | Nov 15, 2022

The expansion of our towns and cities, and our ever growing obsession with rural lifestyle blocks has been threatening the viability of our productive soils for many decades. The balance is now being tested by the recently established National Policy Statement (NPS) relating to Class 1, 2 and 3 land and possibly other productive rural land.

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Is it a Wetland or Not?

By Anna Bensemann, Senior Planner, Baseline Group | Oct 07, 2022

Wetlands play an important role in our ecosystems providing water filtration and a
plethora of biodiversity values. However, managing wetlands located within farms raises challenges around stock exclusion and land drainage management. In recent years many councils began mapping wetlands in an effort to provide a clear rules framework, and to delineate clearly where rules apply.

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Housing Intensification – Not for Everyone Says CCC

By Anna Bensemann, Senior Planner, Baseline Group | Sep 28, 2022

Christchurch City Council (CCC) recently voted against notifying a plan change to give effect to the Government Housing Intensification legislation. Meanwhile, Selwyn District, along with most other local authorities in New Zealand, notified new rules in August to meet its obligations under the intensification plan. Provisions notified under this legislation have immediate legal effect and allow for up to three dwellings per property in specified urban areas; in the case of the Selwyn District this is the Rolleston, Lincoln and Prebbleton urban areas.

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Change isn't coming, it's here!

By Sally Elford, Senior Planner Baseline Group Email | Sep 22, 2022

You may have read or heard about the amendments to the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA) with respect to enabling housing intensification. The amendments required certain Councils to adopt the Medium Density Residential Standards (MDRS) into their District Plans. In Canterbury, this includes Selwyn District, Waimakariri District and Christchurch City Councils.

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Who Pays for Infrastructure in Greenfield Land Development?

By Anna Bensemann, Senior Planner, Baseline Group. | Aug 29, 2022

Development of large areas of land to allow for additional residential housing in Selwyn is at an all-time high, with the region experiencing multiple privately initiated plan change requests. These requests usually seek to allow farmland on the edge of townships to be converted to residential zones. There is much dispute if this is a good thing or not, or if we should instead be accommodating people within the existing urban extent of Selwyn’s townships.

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Have your say on Development Projects

By Rose Leighton, Planner, Baseline Group | Aug 15, 2022

As part of a resource consent process, applications have to go through a notification test to determine who needs to be made aware of the development and be given the opportunity to have their say. This is referred to as limited notification (only certain parties are considered affected) or public notification (open to the public and anyone can make a submission).

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