MINUTES OF A meeting of the Regional Planning Committee



Date:                          Wednesday 13 February 2013

Time:                          1.00 pm


Council Chamber

Hawke's Bay Regional Council

159 Dalton Street



Present:                       F Wilson – Chairman

K Brown

T Gilbertson

T Hopmans

N Kirikiri

E McGregor

K Rose

C Scott

R Spooner

T Waaka

W Wilson

N Kirton

N Baker

L Remmerswaal


In Attendance:          H Codlin, Group Manager Strategic Development

EA Lambert,  General Manager Operations

G Ide, Team Leader Policy

T Sharp, Strategic Policy Advisor

B Powell, Senior Land Management Advisor

C Reed, Senior Planner

M Drury, Committee Secretary



          Chairman Fenton Wilson welcomed all present to the meeting.

          Karakia – W Wilson

An apology was received from Councillor Dick.

It was noted that Councillor von Dadelszen was on Leave of Absence.




No conflicts of interest were declared.


3.       CONFIRMATION OF MINUTES OF the Regional Planning Committee held on 10 December 2012



Minutes of the Regional Planning Committee held on Monday, 10 December 2012, a copy having been circulated prior to the meeting, were taken as read and confirmed.




4.       Matters Arising from Minutes of  the  Regional Planning Committee held on Monday 10 December 2012

There were no matters arising from the minutes.



Action Items from Previous Regional Planning Committee Meetings


There were no action items from the Committee meeting held on Monday, 10 December 2012





Call for General Business Items


1.       Taharua Update



RPS Change 5 - Appointment of Hearing Commissioners


Mr Ide introduced the agenda item which sought the Committee’s recommendations on appointments to form a Panel of accredited RMA hearing commissioners to hear and decide on submissions made to “Change 5” which is a bundle of proposed amendments to the Regional Policy Statement relating to land and freshwater management.

Mr Ide advised that 29 submissions had been received with 9 further submissions received and it was planned to hold a hearing as early as April 2013.

Mr Ide reiterated the key points from a report presented to the Regional Planning Committee in November 2012 which outlined the Committee’s responsibilities to hear and decide upon RMA plan hearing matters.

The Committee discussed the processes for selecting a hearing panel and the financial and resource implications and noted that the RPC Terms of Reference stated  the Committee had the responsibility to recommend a panel but the terms of reference did not state that members had to be members of the Regional Planning Committee. Independent people could be appointed.

Concern was expressed regarding the availability of Commissioners, the process if an appointed Commissioner was then unavailable to sit on the Panel and whether membership  of the panel would be equal representation.

Following further discussion on possible fees payable to appointed Commissioners, further clarification was sought on how the fees payable to appointed Commissioners particularly Commissioners who are also Councillors  was reached  and resolved that recommendation 3 lay on the table until further information was available from staff.  



That the Regional Planning Committee recommends Council:

1.      Agrees that the decisions to be made are not significant under the criteria contained in Council’s adopted policy on significance and that Council can exercise its discretion under Sections 79(1)(a) and 82(3) of the Local Government Act 2002 and make decisions on this issue without conferring directly with the community and persons likely to be affected by or to have an interest in the decision due to the nature and significance of the issue to be considered and decided.

2.      Appoint the following persons as Commissioners to hear and decide on submissions relating to RPS Change 5:

2.1.    Commissioner ‘A’:                                                C Scott (Chair)

2.2.    Commissioner ‘B’:                                                          E von Dadelszen

2.3.    Commissioner ‘C                                                  Professor R Maaka

2.4     Commissioner ‘D’:                                                M Mohi



3      In the event of one or more of the above Commissioners being unavailable, then the Council’s Chairman may approve a suitably qualified substitute person in the role of a Panel Commissioner to hear and decide on submissions relating to RPS Change 5



4.     That the Regional Planning Committee agrees that Recommendation 3 lay on the table         until the next meeting of the Committee on 17 April 2013.





Tukituki Plan Change Verbal Update


Ms Codlin gave a Powerpoint presentation which outlined the process to date  on the Tukituki Plan Change 6 which will be adopted by Council on 27 February 2013 and be notified in early May to align with the Ruataniwha water Storage Scheme applications which will be prepared in relation to this plan change.

Ms Codlin also outlined the changes to the Draft Plan Change since December which included minor  technical amendments to the water quantity section, refinement of water quality limits and the main change around the implementation of the instream concentration limits for nitrate-nitrogen and the targets for dissolved reactive phosphorus.

Responding to questions, Ms Codlin noted the following:

·    It was planned that all stock should be excluded from permanent water areas by mid 2017 and from flowing rivers by mid 2022;

·    Phosphorus management plans  would be required in the future from landowners with properties greater than 4 ha in hotspot catchments  to enable catchment based strategy and mitigation plans to be developed;

·    A communication programme with all landowners will commence once the Plan is notified – this would be in several forms but would include farmer guides;

·    Any landuse changes resulting in increase nitrogen leaching over trigger levels would require a consent;

·    Nitrate concentrations are better than the proposed water quality limits and concentrations decrease down the river;

In moving the recommendation, Councillors McGregor and Gilbertson complimented staff on the comprehensive report to date.



1.  That the “Tukituki Plan Change” verbal update  be received.






Heretaunga Strategy Update


Ms Codlin introduced Mr Tim Sharp Senior Policy Advisor to the Committee.

Mr Sharp outlined the greater Heretaunga/Ahuriri Land and Water Plan Change which would be an integrated approach to managing the Tutaekuri, Ahuriri, Ngaruroro and Karamu (TANK). Catchments where there are approximately 2000 water permit holders.  Stormwater management and the receiving environment including estuaries and the near shore marine area would also be addressed.

Mr Sharp updated the Committee on the stakeholder engagement process and noted that iwi and hapu would be fully involved in the decision making process with representatives on the stakeholder group (TANK) which had a membership of 35 representing a wide range of sectors.   Mr Sharp outlined the meeting timetable for TANK and advised the aim of the group was to provide some consensus recommendations to Council on amendments to the Regional Resource Management Plan.

Mr Sharp reported to date the meetings had been successful but following the recent meeting concern had been expressed that the time frame to June 2013 may be too short.

Responding to a question on which catchments were being addressed for plan changes, mr Sharp advised that there are 3 catchments currently under consideration – those being the Tukituki, Taharua and TANK.   Wairoa is excluded at this time as there were no urgent issues currently in Wairoa that required the development of a catchment plan change.

The Committee noted that ideally some provisions for the Tukituki Plan Change could be incorporated into other plans.



  1. That the Regional Planning Committee receives the report titled “Heretaunga Strategy Update”.











General Business

Councillor Rose expressed concern that general business itemTaharua Update had not been included on the agenda as a late item.

Mrs Lambert outlined the reasons why this had occurred, however  this was an opportunity for the treaty members to be updated on the current situation.

In response Chairman Wilson advised that it was important to have this update considering the Committee did not meet again to April.


That the Taharua Update verbal be accepted as a late  agenda item.



Mr Reed outlined recent changes in the Taharua catchment which included the indefinite withdrawal from the market of nitrification inhibitors, including the Ravensdown product Eco-n. A draft Eco-n memorandum of understanding drawn up between landowners, Ravensdown and HBRC last year could have been a key tool for reducing nitrogen losses to Taharua Stream and the upper Mohaka River. Lincoln University’s expertise in broader nutrient mitigations, as well as Eco-n use, would have been an important part of the MOU.

Prior to this announcement, HBRC’s application to MfE’s Clean-up Fund was also declined. This would have included 50% funding to assist a landowner riparian programme as well as support for Eco-n use by landowners for 2 years.

Mr Reed outlined the implications these changes would have on landowners in the Taharua catchment. Finding a collaborative solution within the catchment could now become more difficult with potentially significant implications for plan change timeframes depending Council’s preferred future direction.

Mr Reed advised that the next steps will be to have discussions with individual landowners in the catchment followed by a collective meeting of all the main landowners to take stock and examine the way forward.  Following these meetings, an updated report outlining future direction options and timeframe implications  would be prepared for the Environment and Services  Committee meeting to be held on 17 April.

Ms Hopmans left the meeting at 3.15pm

Councillor Kirton  left the meeting at 3.25pm

The Committee discussed the implications the loss of funding would have on the future plans for the Taharua catchment and expressed concern about the ongoing monitoring of leaching into the stream and whether the riparian fencing programme would continue.

In response Mr Powell advised that main stem of Taharua Stream has been fenced off. The dairy farms were historically leaching 50-60 kg/ha/yr of nitrogen, but are currently operating at around 35 kg/ha/yr which is a big reduction. While this improvement is not yet being picked up by in stream water quality monitoring due to time lags, another year or so of data could show improvements.  Riparian fencing and planting programmes would need be discussed again with landowners now that MfE funding is not available.

Chairman Wilson confirmed that Council was not losing sight of the objectives in the Taharua Catchment and noted the voluntary contributions of landowners had been exemplary.




1.        That the Regional Planning Committee receives the verbal report “Taharua Update” for information only.



Karakia – Mr W Wilson



There being no further business the Chairman declared the meeting closed at 3.45pm on Wednesday, 13 February 2013.


Signed as a true and correct record.




DATE: ................................................               CHAIRMAN: ...............................................