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Board of Inquiry process was “rubber stamping,” say Kapiti campaigners

Media release from Save Kapiti
Save Kapiti have confidence in the legal process of the High Court to reach a decision that is not a rubber-stamping exercise as they believe the Board of Inquiry was.

Save Kapiti share the concerns of the Wellington City Council around the Board of Inquiry process. The political appointments to these panels have to date given the Government the answers they want.

“We’re saddened that we have got to the position where a territorial authority’s statutory documents are disregarded in such a cavalier manner,” said Save Kapiti spokesperson Mark Harris. “The District Plan, that a council is required by law to prepare, was arrived at through proper consultation with the community. The Government have decided that these statutory documents can be regarded as “fanciful”.

“The Western Link Road was in the District Plan and people would have been driving on it now, reducing the load on the State Highway. The decision by the Board not to compare the proposal to the existing Plan is extremely important because it means that 12 years of community consultation and planning has been hastily overridden by the Government’s wishes. This is the basis of Save Kapiti’s appeal against approval of the Kapiti expressway.

“We share WCC’s concern with the rubber stamp approach that this govt has turned the EPA into in the name of ‘certainty’. What certainty does any territorial authority now have that their legitimate processes won’t be overruled by the minister?”

The appeal will be heard in the High Court in Molesworth Street, Wellington on Wednesday.