Proposed Auckland Unitary Plan - June 2016 Update

The proposed Auckland Unitary Plan was publicly notified for formal submissions in September 2013, with submissions closing in February 2014. Just over 9,000 submissions were received, covering around 100,000 points. This was followed by a Further Submission period, which closed in July 2014 with 3,500 further submitters.

The Independent Hearing Panel website (http://www.aupihp.govt.nz/) advises that the Panel will complete all the hearings in May 2016. The Panel will then provide its recommendations on the Proposed Auckland Unitary Plan to the Auckland Council no later than 22 July 2016. The Council (Governing Body) will consider the Panel's recommendations and make decisions on whether to accept, accept in part or reject recommendations. The Council is required to publicly notify its decisions by 19 August 2016. Submitters will be notified by Auckland Council about the decisions and where they can view them.

The Panel's recommendations and the Council's decisions will only be made available on the Auckland Council website. On 27 July (late afternoon) the Independent Hearings Panel recommendations will be publicly available on the Auckland Council website. This will include a summary document explaining the panel's recommended changes to the proposed Unitary Plan and a recommended version of the plan. The Panel's recommendations will not be published on the AUPIHP website. Following public notification of the Council's decisions, the appeal period commences.

Unlike the standard Resource Management Act procedures, there are very limited opportunities for appeals to the Environment Court arising from the Council’s final decisions on submissions, particularly if the Council accepts the Panel’s recommendations. These are set out in sections 155-159 of the Local Government (Auckland Transitional Provisions) Act 2010.