New National Planning Standards have been released. They will come into force on 3 May 2019.
Released by Environment Minister David Parker, the standards have been introduced to improve the consistency of council plans and policy standards.
Mr Parker says the release means plans will be easier to prepare, use and understand under the Resource Management Act 1991.
“The new Standards do not determine local policy matters or the substantive content of plans, which remain the responsibility of local councils and communities.”
He says that while there will be some up-front cost to councils the first time they update their plans to meet the Standards, this will be vastly exceeded by the savings to those who use them, including councils.
The Ministry for the Environment held nationwide meetings and received 201 submissions on the draft Standards from the public, councils, resource management professionals and iwi last year.
Since then changes have been made to increase clarity and make the Standards more adaptable to local contexts.