Kāpiti Coast mayoral candidate Gwynn Compton says news the government is overhauling the Resource Management Act with a focus on delivering more affordable housing is a good start, but the key will be whether any changes make it into law given how politically problematic past attempts at reform have been.
"It's good to see the government getting things started on overhauling the Resource Management Act and in particular that they're focussing on how the RMA can be improved to help increase the supply of affordable housing," says Mr Compton.
"However, history shows us multiple governments have attempted to fix and reform the RMA and those efforts have typically resulted in either minor tinkering that only adds to the complexity of the law, or have floundered on the fraught political seas of the issue."
Mr Compton says these past difficulties in progressing changes to the Resource Management Act reflect the need to balance the views of communities, protections for the environment, while still enabling development to take place.
"The reality is RMA reform is incredibly difficult. It's vital any changes preserve the ability of communities to have their say on developments that may impact them and continue to have adequate protections our environment, while balancing these against the need to simplify and clarify the law and processes around it to reduce the often onerous cost and time burdens that are required to get resource consents.
"I look forward to the government and the Resource Management Review Panel working closely with local authorities and the communities they represent to make sure the overhaul of the RMA delivers practical recommendations that can be turned into reality, rather than being another missed turn on the perilous road of RMA reform."