The time for discussion was during the submissions process to the Independent Hearings Panel. I urge you all to read this blog Aye there's the RUB from over a year ago if you haven't already. I said this:
It is for this reason that Waiheke must pay close attention to the Commissioners’ Hearings Panel process that is fast-tracking the PAUP and may bring changes to Waiheke that are very much not to our liking.
As it is now far too late to discuss anything concerning the RUB, I can only conclude the meeting was called to give Walden, and the remaining three members of current WLB seeking re-election, an opportunity for additional publicity through the island’s mainstream media. They will be portrayed a heroes struggling to ‘save’ Waiheke from developers.
The reality is somewhat different. The Hauraki Gulf Islands District Plan rules still apply, although developers, like the Walden family, can apply for a private plan change. See the Walden family submission to change the RUB by following the link.
This statement was issued by Council’s planning department.
Rules remain for Waiheke rural areas
Published: 11 August 2016
Existing rules to protect the eastern side of Waiheke Island from development will remain in force despite Auckland Council’s decision to remove the Rural Urban Boundary from the Regional Policy Statement.
Today the Governing Body adopted a recommendation of the Independent Hearings Panel on the Auckland Unitary Plan to put the Rural Urban Boundary in the district plan, meaning it can be altered by future plan changes as further development in the region is required.
While the decision means that there will be no Rural Urban Boundary on Waiheke Island separating the urbanised western side from the rural eastern side, the objectives and policies in the Hauraki Gulf Islands District Plan will remain operative until the council wraps that district plan into the Auckland Unitary Plan.
In particular, the district plan objectives “ensure that ‘village’ style activities and development on western Waiheke do not spread into or occur within eastern Waiheke so that the distinct character of each end of the island is maintained”.
Penny Pirrit, Director Regulatory Services, says the rules, policies and objectives in place under the district plan means that anyone wanting to develop on the eastern side of the island would have to apply for a Plan Change or resource consent for a non-complying activity.
“Anyone applying to develop on the eastern side of Waiheke Island would be assessed against the rules, objectives and policies of the district plan, which are robust enough to enable appropriate consideration of development,” says Ms Pirrit.
“Just because there is no longer a RUB on Waiheke, people shouldn’t think that they can go onto the eastern side and start building villages.
“Work is already planned to start bringing the operative Hauraki Gulf Islands District Plan into the Unitary Plan and those rules will remain in place until that process is complete.”
On the other hand it makes it easier for developers like the Walden family, to push through their 80 house development on their 51 hectares at the back of Trig Hill Rd.
The Board’s posturing is all smoke and mirrors. Those with big rural land holdings close to the current RUB include Mike Lee, Mike Lee’s lawyer Ron Walden, father of Paul Walden, and Liz Waters, owner of the WLB propaganda sheet the Gulf News. When politicians and the press piss in one another’s pocket there has to be a hidden agenda.
As ever the maxim is ‘follow the money’.