NZPI Conference 2017 - Changing Places
Judge David Kirkpatrick and Judge John Hassan
Some learnings from the Auckland Unitary Plan and Christchurch Replacement District Plan Procesess
These were very different hearings models but some common themes
emerge on how planners can be effective as experts and for their clients:
- The model is significantly more inquisitorial
than a merits appeal. While it is a quasi –judicial process, the
ultimately product of a panel’s work is a plan. That imposes significant
different demands in terms of the roles of planners as experts and in the
drafting of plan provisions.
- There is a much higher demand for quality in all
inputs (expert evidence, plan drafting). These burdens are especially
high for Council planners. They are also high for planners advising
stakeholders who have a significant longer term investment in the planning
- There is an important need for flexibility and
creative thinking about processes and procedures, including in mediation and
negotiation with other parties, the roles for expert witnesses, and engagement
with the Panel and the Secretariat.
- All need to be on notice that these hearings,
while producing quicker planning outcomes, are not ‘cheap’ in their resourcing
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