Brownlee uses special CERA powers again
Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee is using his special powers again to change the Canterbury regional plan.
The move highlights the continued loss of democracy being endured by Cantabrians. There will be no public submissions or appeals process.
The change was requested by the government-appointed commissioners at Environment Canterbury who replaced elected members in 2010.
Mr Brownlee has responded with his sweeping powers under the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Act 2011.
He has used them to amend the Canterbury Natural Resources Regional Plan to include new subdivisions within Environment Canterbury’s strict new air quality rules.
The rules are so strict that there are no woodburners currently on the Canterbury market that comply with them.
Environment Canterbury is also sending letters to anyone with burners older than 15 years demanding they get rid of them regardless of condition.
NBR ONLINE has asked the minister for an estimate of how many chimneys were destroyed in the earthquakes and the likely reduction of burner numbers.
We have also asked how amending the Natural Resources Regional Plan complies with the purposes defined in the CER Act.
The legislation states –
The purposes of this Act are:
- (a) to provide appropriate measures to ensure that greater Christchurch and the councils and their communities respond to, and recover from, the impacts of the Canterbury earthquakes.
- (b) to enable community participation in the planning of the recovery of affected communities without impeding a focused, timely, and expedited recovery.
- (c) to provide for the Minister and CERA to ensure that recovery.
- (d) to enable a focused, timely, and expedited recovery.
- (e)to enable information to be gathered about any land, structure, or infrastructure affected by the Canterbury earthquakes:
- (f) to facilitate, co-ordinate, and direct the planning, rebuilding, and recovery of affected communities, including the repair and rebuilding of land, infrastructure, and other property.
- (g) to restore the social, economic, cultural, and environmental well-being of greater Christchurch communities.
- (h) to provide adequate statutory power for the purposes stated in paragraphs (a) to (g).
- (i) to repeal and replace the Canterbury Earthquake Response and Recovery Act 2010.