Plan Processes Challenge Profession

08 March 2016

NZPI, Bryce Julyan

The plan processes that are currently occurring in Auckland and Christchurch are exceptional processes and lessons learned from these will accrue to all of New Zealand. Members are reminded that decisions at a political level do not necessarily change the planning challenges. Proposed plans need to be debated and tested, and objective professional planning opinions are critical to this process, both for and against.

Our members are active in these processes both within Council and outside it advising submitters - it is essential for our members to participate with professional integrity and objectivity, and in the interests of all. It is a challenging, principled task.

Planners must give their own evidence, supported by their critical analysis and professional opinion. If you cannot support a position this needs to be made clear to your client, manager and legal counsel.

At the end of the day members need to be mindful and responsible for their own conduct and professionalism. In terms of guidance (as well as the Code of Conduct) members may wish to revisit the recent paper prepared by the NZPI and RMLA on 'The role of the Expert Witness'. However, Members can also rely on support from NZPI. If you feel you are being unduly pressured to compromise your professional integrity and in need of professional support please contact your Branch or NZPI.