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Hearings and Making a Submission

This section will show you how to make a submission to a Resource Consent application if you are invited via a limited notification or public notification process and then what to do if you want to present the submission at a hearing. Any person interested in the publicly notified application can make a submission on the application. In the instance of limited notification, a notice with a copy of the application is served only on those persons identified as being adversely affected.

Making a submission

A submission is simply a written statement from you about a notified Resource Consent application. The submission must be in writing and can either be in support or opposition of the application, or be neutral. Ensure you understand what the application is about, and what the effects are likely to be, by reading all of the information provided.

You can also talk to the applicant and discuss your issues and concerns with them. You may be able to reach an agreement without going through the formal submission process.

Your submission should:
  • Be clear and to the point

  • Support your views with good information

  • Relate to issues that arise from the proposal

In your submission please clearly indicate:
  • Whether you support or oppose the application, or if you wish to make a neutral submission

  • Which parts of the application you are specifically concerned about

  • Why you are making the submission

  • What decision you want us to make or what outcome you want

  • If we grant the consent, what are some of the conditions you want in place?

  • If you want to attend a hearing and present your submission in-person

Submit your Submission
  • Download the Submission Form and post or deliver it to one of our customer service centres (Dargaville or Mangawhai).

  • We must receive your submission on or before the submission closing date stated on the public notice or letter.

  • Remember you also need to send a copy of your submission to the applicant at the address given on their public notice or letter.

What happens after Submissions close?

The submissions will be assessed by the processing planner, who will use this assessment to compile a report with a recommended decision for a hearing. However if there are no submissions or all the submissions are in favour of the application it may not be necessary to hold a hearing. We also encourage applicants and submitters to communicate directly to discuss any concerns and identify ways in which they can be addressed. If that doesn't work, we may arrange an informal pre-hearing meeting to try to resolve these issues. If issues are not resolved, a hearing may be held to make a decision on the application.

Resource Consent Hearings

A hearing is a public meeting set up by us but chaired by an independent Commissioner, at which applicants and submitters can present evidence in relation to a proposal. The hearing follows certain procedures designed to give all parties a fair opportunity to present facts and to make their views known.

If you make a submission but are unable or do not wish to be present at a hearing, your submission will still be considered by the Commissioner. The independent Commissioner is chosen by us from our pre-selected panel of Commissioners known for their planning expertise and experience. Hearings are conducted with as little formality as possible. You may present your submission personally, through a solicitor or another agent.

Decisions and Appeals

The Commissioner has the authority to make a decision on the application within 15 working days. The decision is notified in writing and posted to all parties. Any party has the right to appeal to the Environment Court against the decision within 15 working days of the decision being notified. 

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