Applying for a Resource Consent

Overview

This page contains information to help you prepare your Resource Consent Application.

It is in your best interests to submit a well-prepared application covering all aspects of your proposal to save you both time and processing costs. Contact a Consents Officer on (06) 366 0999 to discuss your proposed consent as there may be other requirements such as an Engineer's Report or landscape assessments that may be required. This is particularly recommended if you have a larger proposal in mind. 

A Resource Consent application must be accurate and complete before it is lodged with Council. This will enable faster processing, lower cost and fewer complications.

Preparing your application

To make a resource consent application you will need to:

Checklist for Subdivision Consent Applications

Simply click on the Writeable PDF checklist below, type into the form, save a copy for your records and then email the form and any required documentation that needs to be included to recordsprocessing@horowhenua.govt.nz  If  you prefer to complete this by hand, please use the Print PDF.

Checklist for Subdivision Consent Applications (Writeable PDF)(PDF, 905KB)
Checklist for Subdivision Consent Applications (Print PDF)(PDF, 37KB)

Submit a Draft Application

Applicants are strongly advised to submit a draft application first to enable Council officers to assess the application for completeness, prior to lodging a formal application. Officers will provide comment on your draft application within five (5) working days of receipt.

If your application has insufficient information it will either be returned as incomplete or processing will be suspended until you have supplied the further information required.

Application Checklist

Below is a checklist for applications that must be met before Council will accept your application:

  • Name and address of any occupiers/owners of the land subject to the resource consent application other than the applicant. 
  • The types of resource consent you are seeking for example, land use or subdivision. 
  • Other resource consents that are required/being sought from other Councils for example Horizons Regional Council. 
  • Certificate of title for the subject property. 
  • A locality plan or aerial photograph showing the physical location of the property. 
  • A site plan drawn to scale showing your proposal, existing buildings and all other features of the land such as hills, waterways, entranceways, native bush etc. 
  • An elevation drawing showing the side views of your proposal for example the height and Daylight Setback for your new house. 
  • An adequate Assessment of Environmental Effects (see the Assessment of Environmental Effects section below). 
  • For relocated dwellings a building condition report will be required so that Council is able to set a bond on the house to ensure that the exterior is brought up to an acceptable standard with a certain time. For more information on obtaining a building condition report contact a Building Officer at Council. 
  • The correct application deposit (note that this is only a deposit. An additional charge per hour applies. For a list of our current fees go here). 
  • The application form must be signed and dated by the applicant or someone authorised to do so on your behalf. 
  • An address for service. This is for any correspondence that Council sends you including your resource consent if granted. 
  • A statement of what consultation with neighbours has taken place. If you have to obtain neighbours approval you should read the Consultation and Obtaining Written Approval below. 

Section 24 of the Horowhenua District Plan identifies the detail required to be submitted in an application.

It is best if you discuss your application with a Consents Officer prior to lodging it as there may be other requirements such as an engineer's report or landscape assessments that may be required.

You can pay any fees associated with your application using internet banking. Please include confirmation of your payment when submitting your application. For full information on how to make payments please view our Paying Us page. No action will be taken on your application until payment has been receipted by Council and matched to your application.

Direct Referral

The Resource Management Act makes provision for applications to go direct to the Environment Court provided the Council has agreed.  Please contact a Consents Officer should you wish to obtain additional information on this option, or see Sections 87C-G of the Resource Management Act.

Assessment of Environmental Effects (AEE)

If you are applying for a Resource Consent you will need to prepare an Assessment of Environmental Effects (AEE) as part of the application process.

The AEE is a statement of the effects of a proposed activity on the environment. It:

  • Increases understanding of the environmental effects of what you are proposing to do 
  • Identifies alternative ways to avoid, remedy or mitigate adverse effects on the environment 
  • Helps you take other views into account 
  • Can result in a better design of your proposal 

An application for a Resource Consent is not considered complete if it is not accompanied by an AEE. The effects of a proposed activity are a key consideration when an application is assessed.

When preparing the assessment you should consider and address (where applicable) the following matters. The AEE should:

  • Identify the activities for which the Resource Consent is being sought.  You will need to think about your proposal and how it will change the site you intend to use/develop. 
  • Describe the site. Consider its physical limitations locality and possible alternatives, is the site flat or sloping, are there any significant trees, vegetation or unusual features, what are the neighbouring properties, is there access to Council services. 
  • Identify the environmental effects. You should address any effect your proposal may have on those in the neighbourhood or wider community, for example, if you propose to build too close to a neighbours boundary, will this affect their Daylight Access? 
  • Describe any physical effect on the locality including landscape, visual, ecosystems, plants or animals and/or disturbance of habitats. 
  • Identify persons affected by the proposal. 
  • Provide details of any consultation undertaken including with whom and any outcome resulting. 
  • Cover both positive and negative effects. If there are any negative effects the AEE should include how these could be avoided, remedied or mitigated. 
  • For large-scale activities the assessment will need to cover complex issues that may require professional input. For example, if you are proposing to build a large building, input from an expert about how you propose to dispose of stormwater may be required. 
  • The Fourth Schedule of the Resource Management Act 1991 gives guidance on the scope and content of an AEE. 
  • A good way to start an AEE is to assess your proposal against the rule for the zone in which the property is located. The zoning for a particular property is available on the planning maps of the District Plan or by contacting Council. 

To determine the effects on other people it will be helpful to consult those persons.

Consultation and Written Approval

The purpose of consultation is to find out about potential impacts and concerns so that these can either be designed out or minimised in your proposal. Benefits of this include:

  • The maintenance of good relations between all parties. 
  • Helping to minimise fear and misunderstanding of the proposal and reducing resistance towards it. 
  • Providing an opportunity for alternatives to be suggested from other perspectives. 
  • Understanding the effects on other people. 

Consultation requires you to discuss your proposal with all parties who may actually or potentially be affected by the proposed development or who may have an interest in the environment in general. For a person to be deemed adversely affected the adverse effects need to be deemed minor or more than minor.

The size and scale of your proposal will generally determine who you should consult and the extent of that consultation. In some cases this may only need to involve immediate neighbours and in others it may be impossible to consult with everyone who is affected. In these cases the application will be publicly notified for submissions. A starting point to assist you is:

  • Neighbours or adjacent landowners and occupiers 
  • Other users of the resource 
  • Iwi 
  • Department of Conservation 
  • Environmental groups 
  • NZ Historic Places Trust 

There are advantages in undertaking full consultation. The biggest is the saving in time and cost of the application process. If people are uncertain and oppose your proposal it may create lengthy delays that could have been avoided.

Discuss with a Consents Officer the extent of the consultation and confirm those persons or groups that should be approached.  Maintain a record of your consultation, who was consulted, the date, the topics discussed and concerns expressed and any decisions reached.

The information you give the persons or groups being consulted must be clear and straightforward so they can understand it immediately without confusion or misunderstanding.

Remember that consultation is not a matter of you simply telling the people what you intend doing. It is important that their different attitudes and concerns are recognised and acknowledged.

Obtaining Written Approval from a Party

If you or Council identify potentially affected persons you should gain their written approval on Council's form available on our Resource Consent Application Forms page

You should include an accurate description of the activity you are applying for in the space where you describe the activity such as hours of operation, number of employees etc. This should include any non compliance with the rules in the District Plan for example, building a house too close to the road boundary. If the property is rented, you will need to obtain the written approval of both the owner and occupier (renter or tenant).

The party who you are obtaining written approval must correctly fill in Part B and sign a copy of the site plan and elevations. If any of the above is not done, Council may not accept that the potentially affected persons are not affected and may notify the application which will be costlier and more time consuming.

Note: Council will not accept conditional approval from affected parties.