RMA Update, March

Posted By HBFA | March 15, 2022

Charlotte Drury, View Consult, Consultant Planner on behalf of Horticulture New Zealand

At a national level, feedback is being sought on a number of proposals, including the RMA reform. HortNZ is currently preparing submissions for these proposals. From a regional perspective, plan change updates pertaining to horticulture include:

TANK (Plan Change 9)

No decision has been released on the TANK (Plan Change 9) yet. Some of the rules of TANK had legal effect when they were notified (last May) – this is particularly relevant for the land use change rules. So if any growers are changing land use on over 10ha of their property, or more than 10% of their property, then please get in touch, and we can figure out whether or not a regional council resource consent might be needed for this – better to check early than possibly run into problems with the regional council compliance team later on. The rules are focused on land use change where nitrogen losses are likely to increase, so if you are converting what was a squash crop into orchard for example, you are unlikely to require consent, but I would suggest it pays to check it out first.

Plenty of information is available on the HBRC website.

Outstanding water bodies plan change (Plan Change 7)

We attended another informal mediation in late February. It was productive and another meeting is scheduled for April.

Central Hawke’s Bay District Council District Plan hearings

These hearings are starting next week. They have separated the hearings into seven different streams/sections which are being heard separately. HortNZ’s head office in Wellington is fronting this. No major issues – just raising reverse sensitivity matters as there is increasing subdivision down there, as well as potential growth in horticultural operations, so we want to make sure that horticultural operations can carry on about their business without neighbours complaining.


This is the rest of region plan change to the regional plan. It will deal with the catchments that a specific plan change hasn’t been done for – including Esk, Mohaka and Wairoa Catchments were there are a few horticultural growers. The regional council are still at the start of this process – we will be keeping an eye on it to make sure at the appropriate time that we are involved, as it is important that horticultural interests are provided for in the new planning framework.tional level there is feedback being sought on quite a few proposals, including RMA reform. HortNZ head office in Wellington is preparing submissions on them, which HBFA has had the opportunity to review.

If you have any RMA questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch with me directly via email at Charlotte.Drury@hortnz.co.nz or on 027 3225595.

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