The impact of the latest RMA Reforms on Subdivision and Public Appeal Rights

The intention behind the reforms is to reduce time and complexity for developers, which should free up land and reduce the cost of housing.

At present, as per s11 of the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA), subdivision can only be carried out if a National Environmental Standard (NES) or a District Plan permits it. The reforms reverse this presumption by allowing subdivision to occur as of right unless it contravenes a National Environmental Standard or District Plan rule. At present, if they are not happy with a decision, an applicant or the public can appeal a Council’s decision on a resource to the Environment Court. There are four activity statuses for consents, controlled, restricted discretionary, discretionary and noncomplying, the latter being the most heavily scrutinised.

The reforms propose to limit appeal rights under s120 of the RMA for subdivision resource consents to non-complying activities only. This will reduce the roll of the Environment Court. Some would say the reforms are putting private interests (developers) above the public.

A planner can identify the nature, status and emphasis that should be place on certain rules at any particular time, based on the stage in the RMA process the rules are at. Dealing with this change when making a resource consent application for subdivision can be difficult to navigate.

Planning Plus deals with rural and urban subdivision applications frequently and can readily assist you with applications of this kind on all scales.

Feel free to contact us to arrange a no obligation discussion of the rural subdivision proposal you wish to pursue.


(09) 427 9966

Disclaimer As with all our blogs, the information detailed here is general in nature and meant as a preliminary guide only. This should not be substituted for your own investigations or use of your own professional’s. Planning Plus is not liable for any errors or omissions.

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