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Notifications

For both Subdivision and Landuse Consents the Resource Management Act 1991 provides for different levels of notification or in other words public participation. There are three types of notification for resource consents:

  • Non notified
  • Limited notified
  • Publicly notified

When processing a consent Council staff prepare a notification decision recommending which level of notification they believe the particular application should have. This notified decision is then signed off under delegated authority.

Non-Notified Applications

Non-notified resource consent applications are those applications that are not publicly or limited notified. They are applications where the council has decided that the proposed activity, or a requested change or cancellation of an existing resource consent condition:

  • does not require notification under a rule of a plan or national environmental standard and either:
  • will not have, or is not likely to have more than minor adverse effects on the environment (in accordance with s95D) and all parties considered to be adversely affected have provided their written approval; or
  • the adverse effects will be or are likely to be less than minor and therefore no parties are considered adversely affected.

Limited Notified Applications

If Council does not publically notify an application for a resource consent, it must decide if there is any affected person/parties. When deciding if a person is an affected person, s95E states that an affected person must be adversely affected in a way that is minor or more than minor. If you are unable to get the written consent of all those who may be affected by your proposal as identified in the notification decision, your proposal must be limited notified.

This means that only the parties that haven't provided written approval and are deemed potentially affected by your proposal are notified, inviting submissions. Unfortunately this process can be time-consuming and more expensive.

If Council has received submissions during the notification period in most cases the decision on a limited notified consent application must be made by a Hearings Commission. In making a determination the Hearings Commission take into account all submissions for and against the proposal, and the recommendation of Council’s Planner and relevant experts.

The decision of the Hearings Commission can be appealed to the Environment Court, by either the applicant or any of the submitters.

Prior to the Hearing, pre-hearing meetings are often called to facilitate discussion, negotiation and mediation between the interested parties. In some cases applications can be settled by agreement without the need for a formal Hearing.

Publicly Notified Applications

If:

  • the proposed activity will have, or is likely to have more than minor adverse effects on the environment (in accordance with s95D);
  • the effects on the environment of your application are deemed to be more than minor;
  • the applicant (you) requests public notification of the application;
  • a rule or national environmental standard requires public notification of the application; or
  • there are special circumstances

then your proposal must be publicly notified.

This means that a notification process, inviting submissions from interested parties, is unavoidable. Unfortunately this process can be time-consuming and more expensive.

If Council has received submissions during the notification period in most cases the decision on a notified consent application must be made by a Hearings Commission. In making a determination the Hearings Commission take into account all submissions for and against the proposal, and the recommendation of Council’s Planner and relevant experts.

The decision of the Hearings Commission can be appealed to the Environment Court, by either the applicant or any of the submitters.

Prior to the Hearing, pre-hearing meetings are often called to facilitate discussion, negotiation and mediation between the interested parties. In some cases applications can be settled by agreement without the need for a formal Hearing.