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Nats take a big hit on RMA reform

Written By: - Date published: 10:36 am, September 11th, 2013 - 86 comments
Categories: Environment - Tags: ,

National is facing humiliation over it’s failure to get the numbers for its controversial Resource Management Act reforms as both the Maori Party and United Future refuse to back the legislation in its current form. This is very much a good thing for New Zealand’s environment and both parties are to be commended.

The changes, which are designed to weaken environmental protections and make life easier for property developers, have been a centrepiece of National’s policy manifesto. For over a decade now they’ve targeted the RMA as representing too much red tape (despite the fact it’s considered to be light-handed by international standards) and some of their biggest supporters including Federated Farmer and Business New Zealand have put a lot of time and energy into helping that meme along.

This is a fiasco created by Environment Minister Amy Adams, and an embarrassment for her government. It represents a basic political failure to negotiate support. This isn’t not surprising given Adam’s generally poor relationships with parliamentary colleagues, but I would have thought that Key would have had someone looking over her shoulder to make sure these reforms went through as they are very important to many of National’s most important backers.

Then again she’s a Collins supporter so perhaps it was in Key’s interests to giver her enough rope.

86 comments on “Nats take a big hit on RMA reform ”

  1. One Anonymous Knucklehead 1

    Adopting an extreme position then mollifying it slightly to appear open-minded is hardly a new tactic from National.

    • onsos 1.1

      If that was their plan, they took it too far and fouled up. They may push it through, but this looks like failure, which is not a good look on a flagship policy.

  2. BLiP 2

    Geoffrey Palmer sums things up nicely in his just-released “Analysis of the Government’s Proposed Freshwater Management and Resource Management Act 1991 Reforms”. The analysis was commissioned by New Zealand Fish and Game Council and the executive summary states:

    . . . I have concluded that the environmental protection offered by the Act will be weakened by the passage of the Government’s proposed changes. No amount of assertion or assurances given can alter that analytical fact. Further, the journey to finding out the precise consequences of the changes will be long, expensive and uncertain.

    The Resource Management Act represented a deliberate shift on the part of New Zealanders away from economic advancement at any cost towards long-term economic and environmental sustainability. It expressly acknowledged that the state of the natural environment and New Zealand’s economic development were inextricably linked. It was enacted with broad political support after years of public consultation. The Government’s proposals fundamentally erode that commitment to sustainability.

    The Government’s proposals will rewrite the principles at the very heart of the Act. Sections 6 and 7 set out the signposts by which decision-makers can achieve the Act’s purpose of “sustainable management”. The Government’s proposals will replace those provisions with a single list of competing considerations, under which principles protecting the natural environment and its recreational enjoyment will be consistently weakened, and principles promoting development will be consistently strengthened. Two decades of case-law built up in relation to the interpretation of the Act will be rendered redundant.

    • Peter 2.1

      Thanks to anglers and hunters for funding public environmental defence, once again. No one else appears to be doing it.

      • Shane Gallagher 2.1.1

        How about Forest and Bird and Greenpeace? (Just the first two to spring immediately to mind – there are a lot more)

        And the great NZ public who pour funds and untold volunteer hours into defending the environment?

        Good on Fish and Game – we are all fighting the good fight here 🙂

        • Peter

          All environmental NGOs do a great job, it’s just that as the best-funded, Fish and Game takes the brunt, particularly on legal costs, and it’s ultimately unfair for the angler and the hunter to wear that cost on their license fees (although anglers and hunters are generous people).

          We need either DOC performing its statutory advocacy functions or a beefed up Public Environmental Defender’s office that can actually undertake legal work in defence of the environment and the public.

          • Bearded Git

            +1000. I run an environmental group in Wanaka. We are usually outspent by developers many many times over. Once we spent $85k and the applicant spent $1.5m. (Yes, the applicant got consent)

            • vto

              Hi BG, what’s your view on the latest proposed Haast-Hollyford Road and its machinations? Seems like it is beginning to rapidly fall apart, as usual when it comes to this ludicrous scheme from the century before last.

              • Bearded Git

                Just a tourist route. Very expensive to build (much more expensive than numbers floated is my guess) and not viable even as a toll road. All the smart and influential people in Wanaka and Queenstown hate it because it will wreck an unspoiled wildernaess area and reduce visitor numbers to these two towns. There is also an issue about access along part of the route.

                • vto

                  Yes agree completely with all of that. The backers (Westland Council property holding company mainly) also are falling apart and can’t get their internal shit together, let alone begin to address any of those gigantic issues. Keep an eye for it to be quietly dropped…… until the next generation of bozo comes along and gets all excited again..

    • alwyn 2.2

      Ah, so old Geoffrey is still spouting his rubbish about things he doesn’t know anything about.
      The poor fellow has never got over the fact that he was kicked out of power a quarter of a century ago after proving to be the worst Prime Minister New Zealand has had since before the second world war.
      Can you really read the rubbish you are quoting above and not come to the conclusion the Geoff’s mind has gone?

      • Tracey 2.2.1

        can you address each point made by Palmer above so we can see exactly how that makes him someone who has lost his mind?

      • BLiP 2.2.2

        National Ltd™ 101: when confronted with irrefutable logic and/or undeniable facts, apply ad hom.

      • Ian 2.2.3

        So you don’t like Geoffrey and lambast him as worst PM since before WW II. I’ve never cared for his views that much either, but probably for different reasons. So your benchmark criteria for ‘poor’ or ‘worst’ is what, in judging current & past PMs? Its all very well to make a vitriolic statement but its just hot air if it isn’t anchored to something.

        • alwyn

          I’ll limit my objections to GP to just a couple of points.
          The first was his inclusion of that awful clause in the SOE legislation to the effect that nothing they do is allowed to conflict with the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi. He then never made any attempt to document what were the principles he was talking about.
          He apparently told Richard Prebble at the time that the the clause was meaningless, would never apply to anything and was just a way to get the Maori caucus members in the Labour party of his back.
          Well it is brought up by every judge, tribunal and iwi group who then argue that it means anything they want it to. So much for his foresight.
          As to being the worst PM. He had the charisma of an old piece of chewing gum and was leading his party into the slaughter house in the 1990 election. As an act of desperation the Labour party defenestrated him about six weeks before the election. Moore never had a chance of winning but at least he saved the party from a massacre and the loss of most of their seats.
          A person I know, who was close to the Government at the time, said that both Clark and Cullen thought they would lose their seats unless they got rid of Palmer. I don’t know whether that was true but it seems plausible.

          • Adele

            Kiaora alwyn,

            What redneck hole did you crawl from? The principles of the Treaty are an invention of the Courts, as the reality of the Treaty would have meant that Pākehā New Zealand would have to accept full Māori authority over lands and waterways. The principles dilute the full effects of the articles. You should thank Geoffrey Palmer not deride him.

            Geoffrey Palmer in this country’s foremost consitutional expert and any behaviour you attribute to him that is not honourably motivated is simply you being an ugly little person with an aneurysm for a neck.

            • alwyn

              Of course the “principles” of the Treaty are an invention of the courts.
              That is what I am objecting to. If GP had wanted to give this power out he should have damn well said what he meant, rather than leave it to an unelected group of self indulgent jurists.
              That may be your interpretation of what the Treaty “really” means but not everyone would agree with you.
              Geoffrey may be New Zealand’s most self proclaimed “foremost constitutional expert” but it doesn’t mean that it is true.

            • vto

              Adele your selective selection of selected legal applications makes you look silly

      • ianmac 2.2.4

        How about this for identifying the threat from the “Reforms:”

        Huge risk of environmental damage and loss of local democracy from planning reforms by A. Omundsen
        Proposed planning reforms have been heavily contested by environmental, community, legal and professional organisations around the country……..Approximately 13,000 submitters on the planning reforms discussion document are disappointed that key concerns raised have not been reconsidered. The fact that the proposed changes to the principles of the planning legislation will “significantly and seriously undermine environmental protection” has been demonstrated by members of the legal profession, including Sir Geoffrey Palmer, Resource Management Law Association and DLA Phillip Fox Lawyers.


      • Martin 2.2.5

        worst sinceWW2? surely the present one must have that honour, or Syd Holland?

        • Rodel

          Yechhh! Syd Holland. When I was a little boy he shook my hand once. I’ve been washing it daily ever since.
          If the present one did that to me dunno how I’d cope.

        • alwyn

          I realise it isn’t a very popular opinion on this site but I’m in agreement with Chris Trotter in my opinion of John Key. He is by far the most gifted politician of our age, and the Labour party are stupid in underestimating his skills.
          About Holland? Yes he wasn’t very good I must admit.
          Do you realise that if Keith Holyoake hadn’t lost his seat in 1938, and been out of Parliament until the next election in 1943 he would have probably been the leader of the National party in 1949, become Prime Minister and probably been like Menzies in being PM for about 20 years?

          • tricledrown

            Alwynger You been smoking lame duck weed.
            Whats Keys Majority in parliament lame DucKey limps to next election with no majority
            doesn’t sound like holyoake or menzies.
            They were far more pragmatic and inclusive!

            • alwyn

              I must agree that whatever you have been smoking is a great deal stronger than mine.
              Indeed I find that I have a great deal of difficulty in even reading the disturbed rambling of this and your other post just below.
              Key sounds very like Holyoake, who I knew, to me.
              Incidentally in the post below you seem to think that I, or perhaps you mean John Key, is a member of the Religius Society of Friends, or the Quakers as they are often referred to.
              Not true for me and I don’t think so for John Key.

      • tricledrown 2.2.6

        alwym your quakers that was till lame ducKey !
        Alwyn your pathetic desperation is laughable!
        Geoffrey Palmer Is our most educated and knowledgeable expert on constitutional law!
        Simon Upton (National Party conservation minister Rhodes scholar) brought Sir Geoffreys draft RMA to parliament and it was put into law by the National party.

    • Ennui 2.3

      Thanks BLiP for mentioning us anglers and hunters. This is of course all part of a much bigger issue: the defense of and protection of the commons.

      My experience of being involved in environmental issues over the years is that the grab for resources, usually unpaid or barely paid for (water extraction, mining) has been dismal. We win point victories at great cost for the environment, then have to defend, losing in an erosive sense. We kill our environment for the enrichment of the few, who in turn justify it as economic necessity. And we all are guilty of creating the economic demand with our new trinkets (iPods, cars etc).

      I want a new Labour government to take the issue of the privatization of the commons very seriously. The biggest single issue outside of environmental degradation for our citizens is the privatization of access by stealth. No access to beaches, lakes, rivers unless you pay, and even outright exclusion. The last Labour government did not give a flying f**k about this. Lets hope the next one does.

      • vto 2.3.1

        Yes, access to the public realms is a biggie. It annoys me greatly when public access routes have locked gates on them. If retaliation is considered appropriate then one method of vengeance is to slap a second large lock on it and throw away the key….

  3. Peter 3

    It’s a very big win, and an example of MMP in action. Thanks to Peter Dunne and Tariana Turia (although I suspect it was Flavell and Sharples who pushed her). I’ve been working on RMA changes professionally and personally for nearly two years, and it’s been frantic and stressful trying to achieve even minute gains against this government, but it seems that the general pressure from all sides has resulted in at least a stay of execution.

    There’s also something else going on here – the rise of the Blue Greens now that Nick Smith is back in Cabinet (he is ranked above Adams, and no doubt still has a direct line to the man with the chequebook, his old mate Bill English). Smith isn’t perfect, but he’s the best friend the environment in this government right now, and wins such as this don’t come every day.

    • ghostwhowalksnz 3.1

      Seems like Amy Adams shouldnt have been living it up at the Americas Cup over the last week and instead been at her desk in Wellington…. you know doing stuff that thats in her portfolio….not quayside in San Francisco

    • Tracey 3.2

      well done on your efforts… it’s a battle won but not the war?

      • Peter 3.2.1

        Hard to work out what is the battle and what is the war currently, but it’s a step in the right direction. The RMA changes were a direct response to Fish and Game and others having success in the Environment Court and High Court over regional water plans and regulations, and the strength of the arguments (environmental, social, economic) were such that the only way that National could see to win after that was to change the law (in Canterbury first, and with the now scuttled RMA changes).

        There will be another round, and some changes, but critically, it puts the legislative timeframe out beyond Christmas and into election year, and Key does not want that at all.

        • Tracey

          I have experience banging my head against the brick wall that is govt depts so can appreciate how hard this fight is.

          • Peter

            They can all be circumvented, you just need the funds, good arguments, and good lawyers (hence the funds). Minimum $100,000 for these fights, sometimes upwards of $1,000,000.

    • onsos 3.3

      Do you think the Blue Greens have had a hand in this?

      It would mark real problems for National if they did. This is a bad piece of business for National; it marks a real failure of political management. If it is the result of white-anting from Nick Smith, then that would mark real internal problems for National.

      I wouldn’t put it past Smith. He is a clumsy and incompetent operator, whatever his views on the environment.

  4. Winston Smith 4

    I don’t understand this, apparantly we’re living in a dictorship under National so how could this happen?

      • Winston Smith 4.1.1

        I now fully expect everyone on here to sing P. Dunnes praises over this…yeah right 😉

        • Colonial Viper

          Peter Dunne has done a pretty good thing for the country. He was always in tune with environmental and conservation issues. He’s really come through this time.

          • Winston Smith

            Well played

          • Francis

            After the GCSB thing, I’m not sure I’d trust him that much.

            Wouldn’t surprise me if it’s another “willing seller, willing buyer” ploy. Then again, he may as well hold the government to ransom. At least it will delay legislation…

    • tc 4.2

      Dictators fall and amongst the first signs are support from current allies being withdrawn.

    • fender 4.3

      Yes WS we are certainly living under a National “dictorship”/ dick-tor-ship.

      Looks like some more threats will need to be directed at Dunne to make him do another GCSB style flip-flop.

      • Mary 4.3.1

        Dunne will flip-flop regardless. That’s what he does. He sees his job as maintaining the facade of democracy in New Zealand.

        • Arfamo

          Yes but the facade has crumbled away to reveal a self-serving idiot who has been making a fool of himself ever since the Vance affair. He’s my MP. I’ve never voted for him and only met two people who were prepared to admit they did. If Labour put up a seriously decent candidate I don’t think he’ll be re-elected.

    • Saarbo 4.4

      Yes, appears to be unravelling…

  5. wyndham 5

    Don’t have too much faith in ‘Mr. Reasonable’ Dunne. Odds are that he’s just showing Key that he is still annoyed over the Dunne / Vance emails affair. Watch for him to change his stance once the odd meaningless alteration has been made to the bill.

    • Tracey 5.1

      using it to make sure he has no opposition next year in Ohariu?

    • Arfamo 5.2

      Odd and meaningless largely sums up United Future and Peter Dunne. You’re probably right that any Nat-proposed amendment, however vacuous, will secure his vote.

    • BLiP 5.3

      Watch for him to change his stance once the odd meaningless alteration has been made to the bill.

      Not like he hasn’t done it before. A cynic might suggest that both he and the maori Party are using the trick to gather some publicity for themselves while setting the stage for National Ltd™ to demonstrate its green credentials with a backtrack on one or two insignificant clauses deliberately placed in this License To Pollute legislation.

  6. Sookie 6

    Contrary to the usual Nat posturing, the amendments decision released last month was slightly watered down from the original discussion document. But it is still a big relief to see the usually pestilent Maori and United Future minions blocking the bill. As a Planner I didn’t have big concerns about the Council-bashing amendments proposed, but the Section 6 and 7 amendments were horrendous and likely to cause case law chaos. However I expect some form of bill will go through with minion support.

    • Bearded Git 6.1

      Very very very very slightly watered down The key changes to s6 and s7 that gutted the Act and the sly changes (insertion of a word here and there) that also caused landscape protection to be watered down and extra costs for Councils and community groups were still there. In particular the imposition of a national District Plan is madness.

  7. vto 7

    This is brilliant news.

    In our business we deal with the RMA all the time sometimes. It is no major hurdle of red tape – if you do your homework, consult with those affected, negotiate / deal with the relevant authority/s, don’t apply for outlandish projects, and go about things in an open and clear manner then there is never a problem.

    Half the problem of the people I have always come across who complain about the RMA is themselves and their attitude. They expect that the world should be there just for them and they cannot see how others may have an alternative view on their desires. This attitude is generally prevalent right across their character.

    As for the proposed changes by this horrible government – they give me the shivers. As said during their first term, this lot recognise that for them and their supporters this is a last grab at resources and the like before they lose office and the already swinging pendulum against their ways beds itself into the kiwi psyche and society. It is a last grab, nothing more.

    • Bearded Git 7.1


    • beGone Craven SpyBill leopard 7.2

      +1 VTO,

      Yep, not only do these people not do their homework and think everything should be arranged to their desires (regardless of the damage) they waste a lot of councils and communities’ time and money that would be better spent on better, more well formulated business designs.

  8. tracey 8

    Agree with vto. Most who dont like the rma dont like it because it limits tge damage their project can do to the environment

  9. Sable 9

    The environment has taken enough of a beating at Nationals hands so its good to see that Dunne and the opportunists party have finally grown something that vaguely resembles a conscience. The question of course is why? Could it be they see the writing on the wall and don’t want to sink beneath the political waves with Captain “Whitewash” Keys come next election?

  10. I hate the RMA and this piece of legislation She is passing has made me confirm my vote back to National Next year.

    Excellent national and thank God for you.

    OK cool thanks Mr Key and national to kick the RMA out the window.

    Also thanks for the Housing accord. At least something happening there

    Shame on Greens for apposing it when the say they want affordable home for he poor.

    Oh and whats interesting is the right wing counsellors apposing the Draft Unitary Auckland plan

    Shame on you.

  11. bad12 11

    i would say the opposition from both the Maori Party and Untied Future is a bit of both, i do not like to ascribe to either party any credit for anything as both are what keeps the current abysmal National Government on the Treasury Benches,

    United Future with much fanfare befor the 2011 election did announce it was joining forces with the ‘huntin and fishin’ crowd as it’s political voice and as ‘the Hairdo’ had sucked in and sunk various other political groupings without trace like the black hole in space of New Zealand politics over the years i just thought ‘there goes another one’

    i don’t for a minute tho believe that Dunne will be opposing the changes to the RMA for purely altruistic reasons and it is obvious that He will get months of free publicity out of such opposition, much needed oxygen heading toward November 2014, He being nearly as two faced and Slippery as the current holder of that title the Prime Minister, is likely to allow the Legislation to proceed on the cheap once He has milked it for all it’s worth in terms of news coverage,

    The Maori Party opposing the changes to the RMA is a different kettle of fish and i would suggest it’s being pushed from Te Ururoa Flavell to stop the Waka of the Maori Party sinking below the waves as an irrelevancy in the current Parliament, a lot too little to late is my diagnosis and my understanding is that like ‘the Hairdos’ United future befor it, the Maori Party would have if pressed to provide proof, trouble coming up with the required numbers to keep it as a party under the current rules,

    There is tho down at flax roots level a growing number of young Maori switched on to the Green message so Flavell could be said to be representing them,

    The wild card in the pack that has not yet been mentioned in relation to their attitude to the changing of the RMA is of course Winston’s NZFirst, Winston working on that old adage that any publicity is good publicity might yet decide to give National NZFirst’s support while milking it for all it’s worth in the media…

  12. MrSmith 12

    And sorry peasants Amy couldn’t be reached for comment as she was currently watching the Americas cup Live in San Fran. If my memory serves me right Amy’s just another farmer/farmers daughter blatantly working for her kin folk here, like Bill English, Nathan Guy, David Carter etc

    Watch Keys lap dog Dunne roll over once again for a tummy rub and a couple of bones on this one.

    Good on the Maori party for growing a spine tho.

    • vto 12.1

      You know what makes me laugh at people like those you listed MrSmith?

      That is their constant cry that they DO care for the land and they DO ACTUALLY want to leave the place better than they got it, and they REALLY DO look after the land when the reality facts indicate that the likes of Adams and Guy and Carter and English, and their ilk absolutely do not care for the land, and absolutely do not leave it in better condition that when they got it.

      Evidence: no rivers for swimming or drinking in the Waikato (prior to them all rivers in Waikato were safe for swimming and drinking)
      Evidence: 60% of NZ rivers unsafe (prior to them 100% were safe. In fact even 20 years ago more rivers were safe)
      Evidence: Scarcity of natural flora and fauna in their areas (prior to them there were natural wonderlands all over the whole place).
      Evidence: Land in East Cape region scarred and eroded all over (prior to them was virtually no erosion).
      Evidence: Erosion in most all parts of NZ farmed areas (prior to them was no erosion).
      Evidence: Canterbury drinking water wells are steadily being polluted (prior to their dairy herds the water was world class).
      Evidence: Rivers now running dry and destabilising habitats (prior to their irrigation rivers ran more)

      Actually, it doesn’t make me laugh, it makes me cry…

      The farming sector of NZ has not looked after the land or the environment at all and when they claim they do their bullshit should be shouted down. They do not like being confronted with this – they get all het up and fume and steam and storm off. With not an answer in sight.

      They have failed to look after the land.

      • srylands 12.1.1

        Prior to “them” there was nothing.

        Without “them” New Zealand would look pretty much like PNG does today (without the copper mines)

        Answer is to lift standards and water management. Adopt policies to make the country more prosperous. Start by promoting agressive oil and minerals exploration.

        You need to adopt solutions that are consistent with growth. There is no point in attacking dairying.

        • vto

          What was being attacked there srylands was the farmers own claims that they look after the land and leave it better than when they got it. It was not an attack on farming it was an attack on farmers claims.

          And further, you do not need to start from scratch to evidence this i.e. before farming began, you can do it over only the last twenty years in many parts of the country.

          • srylands

            “And further, you do not need to start from scratch to evidence this i.e. before farming began, you can do it over only the last twenty years in many parts of the country.”

            Yes I agree.

            • vto

              Really? Great.

              Having said all of that, of course there is without doubt a change in the air and on the ground whereby sustainable farming allowing the surrounding environment to begin to recover some of its previous condition is being practised. Such things include planting and protection of wateways and less use or targeted use of fertiliser, etc.

              So, some kudos for them that do so.

              I guess one of the questions is – taking into account the improvement being made as just described, is the bigger picture actually improving overall? Or do the new and intensely heavy practices in other areas outweigh those positive improvements …

              … looking at the evidence over those last 20 years the conclusion would have to be that the bigger picture is continuing to worsen i.e. farmers are not leaving the land / environment in better condition than when they got it, they are instead eating it. And I suspect that is in pursuit of the riches at the end of the irrigator… which only seem to be intensifying

        • marty mars

          srylands no, subsequent to “them” there will be nothing. They came, they saw, they conquered. That is their legacy – nothing. Sure ‘they’ created wealth for ‘their’ families along the way but the cost has cost us all.

        • MrSmith

          “Answer is to lift standards and water management.”

          That’s right srylands and National are doing such a great job on that front!


          “But a draft version leaked to the Weekend Herald was criticised by Massey University’s Russel Death as having “extremely weak” limits on key measures, particularly those for nitrates in rivers and streams.


          The maximum nitrate concentration proposed in the document is 6.9mg a litre of water, which Dr Death said would result in “out of control” algae growth.”

        • tricledrown

          Schrillglands getting bored at the Cosby textor Office again!
          By putting mining and oil to the fore you are attacking dairying if we strike a big reserve of oil our dollar will sky rocket a put the dairy industry out of business our economy is so small it would damage just about every productive sector !
          Another load of bulls hit from

  13. swan 13

    I guess we will have to put up with high house prices for longer now then.

    • McFlock 13.1

      nah mate.
      We’ll just need a progressive housing policy that doesn’t rely on the avarice of slumlords.

  14. xtasy 14

    How amusing to see on “The Vote” tonight one John (the amnesiac) Banks sit next to Peter Done, and go on about the RMA needing to be reformed, to have less rules to build “hay barns”. He later went on about “granny flats” in Epsom taking too long for consenting.

    Yet it is Dunne, aka “Done”, who alongside the Maori Party now has pulled his support to the RMA Amendment Bill.

    “Done” was silent there, so hey, some interesting developments on that front. But I bet, he will “consult” with Amy Adams and come to some sort of “agreement” that will be good for United Future (and their clientele).

    I would not put too much hope into Dunne and his agendas, and Maori Party are irrelevant on this anyway. Dunne sold out on so much, he is just focused on more “profiling” and “prominence” for his party and himself in the mainstream media, none else, I fear.

    • miravox 14.1

      “I would not put too much hope into Dunne and his agendas”

      His agenda? – Where his funding will come from.

      Didn’t and outdoor recreation party / lobby group merge with United Future aways back? Anything that affects their interests will get serious attention from Dunne.

  15. Arfamo 15

    The Vote is a load of drivel in my opinion but I did find the resounding vote in favour of the Opposition tonight invigorating. The Nact government will be starting to sweat as they face the scary reality of a Labour Party led by someone who can easily rubbish their bullshit.

    I don’t think Peter Dunne did himself any favours tonight. His most memorable comment was an egregious ageist insult thrown at Winnie Peters for no apparent reason. The man has been making a total dickhead of himself ever since the Vance “affair”. Doubt he’ll retain his seat this next time round.

  16. tricledrown 16

    Its funny how tough polution laws are enforced on urban businesses while rural businesses get off very lighty travelling aroud the country side seeing massive burn offs by farmers ruining the views and Air quality is just unbelievable tourists local and foreign come to see our fantastic scenery and all they get is a blue haze and rivers they shouldn’t swim in.
    Typical hypocrasy from a very powerful minority!

  17. David H 17

    I was watching the Hair on TV the other night/morning, cant remember which been a little ill, but what made me feel even worse was Dunny saying that the only thing that bothered him was section 2 of the RMA act the rest was ok. I hope i was delirious, but i fear not.

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  • Farewelling sports administrator and philanthropist Sir Eion Edgar
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  • Arihia Bennett to chair Royal Commission Ministerial Advisory Group
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  • Speech to APEC business event
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