Why does a Resource Consent need monitoring?
Almost all resource consents have some monitoring conditions, designed to make sure you comply with the conditions of the resource consent. We do this:
- to avoid or mitigate potential adverse effects on communities and the environment.
- because the Council has a legal obligation under the RMA to monitor resource consents.
- because the consent holder has a legal obligation to comply with the conditions.
What is the difference between a Resource Consent and a Building Consent?
A building consent is issued under the Building Act 2004 and is specific to the actual construction details and building regulations.
A resource consent is issued under the RMA and covers things that may affect the environment and people for activities that do not comply with the District Plan.
Why can’t you inspect my Resource Consent conditions at the same time as the Building Consent inspection?
The conditions on your building consent fall under the Building Act 2004 and are subject to specific inspection points during construction. These require inspections by a Building Inspector.
The conditions on your resource consent fall under the Western Bay of Plenty District Operative District Plan which is a requirement under the RMA. These conditions are monitored by a Council Compliance Officer.
What kind of conditions does Council monitor on my Resource Consent?
Some examples include inspecting the effect of an activity such as the hours of operation, noise levels and landscaping.
When will the monitoring take place?
Council has developed a monitoring programme based on the risk associated with the activity. Your Resource consent has been identified as an activity that requires monitoring.
Council will notify you when your inspection is due to take place. This will be carried out by a Council Compliance Officer at any reasonable time.
Why do I need a site inspection?
Council will monitor your site to make sure you comply with the conditions of your resource consent.
After a site inspection is completed, ongoing monitoring may be required.
This will incur additional charges.
How do I know if I am meeting the conditions of my consent?
Once your inspection has been carried out you will receive a copy of the monitoring report. This will outline what conditions have been complied with and identify any conditions requiring further monitoring and re-inspection.
What happens if I stop operating or change your activity?
If you are not going to carry out your activity anymore then you need to notify Council so we can update our records and remove you from the monitoring list.
If you have changed the activity (starting a different business /use of the site), you may need to apply for a variation of your Resource consent conditions or submit a new Resource consent application.
If you are unsure or have any questions regarding your Resource consent, please contact the Customer Service Planner. The Customer Service Planner can be contacted through our customer service team on 0800 926 732, where they will pass on a message to the Customer Service Planner on your behalf. Alternatively, you can contact the Customer Service Planner directly by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Why is Council undertaking a new monitoring approach?
The review of the RMA, identified that failure to adequately monitor activities has the potential for negative effects from activities beyond those permitted, and negative impacts to be experienced by communities.
These effects can include negative impacts on neighbouring properties including noise, traffic, residential and commercial site amenity, privacy, daylighting.
Monitoring of these consents are to be monitored periodically over time to ensure ongoing compliance. The frequency of the monitoring will be based on the likely nature of the effects. The scale of the activity and on compliance history.
What has changed?
Monitoring of Resource consents has historically been undertaken by Council at the time when the consent has been issued, to determine initial compliance with the conditions in the Resource consent issued by Council.
Monitoring over time to ensure that the activity is still being operated in accordance with the Resource consent has been limited.
Council has undertaken a stocktake of Resource consents that have been granted over the past 20 years to determine those that may have a higher likelihood to impact on neighbouring uses, the environment or community infrastructure.
What are the benefits of consent monitoring?
Effective Resource consent monitoring ensures accountability for the consent holder, gives early warning of issues or problems before they become serious, costly or irreversible.
Less directly, it can inform more targeted consent conditions over time, more appropriately designed rules and standards, and more efficient processing of consents, resulting from a better understanding of likely changes to the environment and a smoother process for consent holders.
Compliance and monitoring helps ensure sustainable management of natural and physical resources. Poor monitoring can significantly undermine investment in good planning, policy-making, Resource consenting processes, and negatively impact communities. Regular monitoring ensures consent holders understand the need to comply, and is necessary to achieve desired community outcomes.