Environmental compliance

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Image/logo for showing indicator 'Steady'
 
Number of substantiated complaints/ breaches of Resource Management Act 1991 resource consent conditions or district plan rules
Number of formal enforcement actions taken
 

Purpose of indicator

Complaints in relation to alleged breaches of the Resource Management Act 1991(RMA) resource consent conditions or district plan rules are received and investigated by Rotorua Lakes Council. The purpose of district plan rules and resource consent conditions is to control effects on the environment. Monitoring of substantiated complaints in the residential zones gives an indication of what pressures and effects there are in the urban environment.

Current information and trend

When a complaint regarding district plan or consent condition compliance is received Council’s Monitoring and Compliance Officer undertakes an inspection to verify whether the complaint is substantiated. The general trend shown in figure 1 is that from 2007/08 to 2011/12 there was a larger number of complaints where a breach was found versus no breach of the RMA district plan or resource consent conditions complaints. The number of complaints about activities in residential zones is steady and varies between 20 and 25 each year. Most complaints are for activities in the Residential B Zone (figure 2). This is expected as it is the largest of all residential zones and also has the most number of resource consents of the residential zones. Over half of the complaints received for this zone were substantiated.

No complaints were received for activities in Residential D zone which is a small mixed office/ residential zone adjacent to the CBD.

The most common type of complaint in residential zones was for home-based business, yard encroachment and un-consented house/ illegal living (figure 3). Most of these complaints were substantiated.

For the 5 year period 2007/08 to 2011/12, 55% of environmental complaints investigated were found to be substantiated in that there was a breach of the RMA district plan rules or resource consent conditions (figure 4). The majority of these were for breach of a district plan rule (figure 5). Only 2% of complaints resulted in an abatement notice being issued, while over 60% were resolved by formal and informal methods such as verbal advice, letter and face to face meeting. Nearly 30% of all complaints required no further action, mostly because the complaint was not substantiated. Due to their nature a small number of complaints required to referring to either another Rotorua Lakes Council department or to a regional council. For example, Rotorua Lakes Council Environmental health officers address noise complaints and regional councils address discharges. Figures 1, 3 and 4 show complaints that were ‘undetermined’. These were the complaints referred, as shown in figure 6.

The remaining 2% of complaints were unresolved (figure 6). Generally unresolved complaints involve a number of parties and can take some time to resolve.


Bar graph showing the number of environmental complaints per year
Figure 1
Source: Rotorua Lakes Council



Bar graph showing the number of complaints by the residential zone
Figure 2
Source: Rotorua Lakes Council

 
chart showing the Types of environmental complaints in Residential Zones
Figure 3
Source: Rotorua Lakes Council
Note: Noise complaints are reported separately as its own indicator

Pie graph showing the percentage of environmental complaints breach/non breach 2007/08 to 2011/12
Figure 4
Source: Rotorua Lakes Council

Chart showing the type of breach found

Figure 5
Source:  Rotorua Lakes Council

Pie graph showing the type of action taken

Figure 6
Source: Rotorua Lakes Council

In summary

  • The most common type of environmental complaint in residential zones was about home-based business, yard encroachment and un-consented house/living (figure 3)
  • 55% of complaints investigated were found to be substantiated
  • The majority of these were for breach of a district plan rule (figure 5)
  • 2% of complaints resulted in abatement notices being issued
  • Over 60% were resolved by informal methods such as verbal advice, letter and face to face meeting
  • Nearly 30% of all complaints required no further action, largely because the complaint was not substantiated
  • 3% of complaints received were unrelated to RMA district plan rules or resource consent conditions and referred to the appropriate RLC department or regional council
For further information sources
www.rotorualakescouncil.nz
 
Page reviewed: 03 Jul 2019 10:11am