HuttCity_TeAwaKairangi_BLACK_AGENDA_COVER

 

 

KOMITI ITI AROTAKE MAHERE Ā-ROHE|

District Plan Review Subcommittee

 

 

15 September 2022

 

 

 

Order Paper for the meeting to be held in the

Council Chambers, 2nd Floor, 30 Laings Road, Lower Hutt,

on:

 

 

 

Thursday 22 September 2022 commencing at 2.00pm

The meeting will be live streamed on Council’s Facebook page. Members of the public wishing to speak to items on the agenda are asked to contact: democraticservicesteam@huttcity.govt.nz

 

 

 

Membership

 

 

                                         Cr  S Edwards (Chair)

Cr K Brown

Cr B Dyer

Deputy Mayor T Lewis (Deputy Chair)

Cr N Shaw

Maiora Dentice (endorsed by Te Rūnanganui o Te Ati Awa)

 

 

 

 

For the dates and times of Council Meetings please visit www.huttcity.govt.nz

 

Have your say

You can speak under public comment to items on the agenda to the Mayor and Councillors at this meeting. Please let us know by noon the working day before the meeting. You can do this by emailing DemocraticServicesTeam@huttcity.govt.nz or calling the Democratic Services Team on 04 570 6666 | 0800 HUTT CITY

 

 


HuttCity_TeAwaKairangi_SCREEN_MEDRES

DISTRICT PLAN REVIEW SUBCOMMITTEE

 

Membership:                   Chair of Policy, Finance and Strategy Committee

                                     4 other councillors

                                                 Up to 2 representatives appointed by Iwi

 

NOTE:

Elected members should hold current certification under the Making Good Decisions Training, Assessment and Certification Programme for RMA Decision-Makers.

The Chair should in addition hold Chair certification.

Standing Orders 30 and 31 outlining provisions for Tangata Whenua and Taura Here do not apply to this Subcommittee, and Iwi appointees will have full voting rights as members of the Subcommittee under Standing Orders.

 

Meeting Cycle:               As required

Quorum:                      4

                                        

Reports to:                         Policy, Finance and Strategy Committee

 

PURPOSE:

To make recommendations to the Policy, Finance and Strategy Committee, for recommendation to Council on the matters to be addressed in the full review of the District Plan and development of a Proposed District Plan.

Provide:

Direction to Council officers on all matters relating to the drafting of content for the review of the District Plan. This includes but is not limited to:

·         scoping and investigation of the issues

·         engagement on possible content

·         development of discussion documents and other draft documents for consultation

·         development of a Draft District Plan for consultation

·         development of a Proposed District Plan for statutory consultation.

General:

Any other matters delegated to the Subcommittee by Council in accordance with approved policies and bylaws.

    


HUTT CITY COUNCIL

 

Komiti Iti Arotake Mahere ā-Rohe |

District Plan Review Subcommittee

 

Meeting to be held in the Council Chambers,

2nd Floor, 30 Laings Road, Lower Hutt on

 Thursday 22 September 2022 commencing at 2.00pm.

 

ORDER PAPER

 

Public Business

 

1.       Opening formalities - Karakia Timatanga (22/2299)

Whakataka te hau ki te uru

Whakataka te hau ki te tonga

Kia mākinakina ki uta

Kia mātaratara ki tai

E hī ake ana te atakura

He tio, he huka, he hau hū

Tīhei mauri ora.

Cease the winds from the west
Cease the winds from the south
Let the breeze blow over the land
Let the breeze blow over the ocean
Let the red-tipped dawn come with a sharpened air. 
A touch of frost, a promise of a glorious day.

 

2.       APOLOGIES

M Dentice

3.       PUBLIC COMMENT

Generally up to 30 minutes is set aside for public comment (three minutes per speaker on items appearing on the agenda). Speakers may be asked questions on the matters they raise.

4.       CONFLICT OF INTEREST DECLARATIONS

Members are reminded of the need to be vigilant to stand aside from decision making when a conflict arises between their role as a member and any private or other external interest they might have.    

5.       Minutes

Meeting minutes District Plan Review Subcommittee, 23 June 2022                        5

6.       Approach to listing Notable Trees in the District Plan (22/2129)

Report No. DPRS2022/4/191 by the Intermediate Policy Planner                          9

 CHAIR’s Recommendation:

“That the recommendations contained in the report be discussed.”

 

7.       QUESTIONS

With reference to section 32 of Standing Orders, before putting a question a member shall endeavour to obtain the information. Questions shall be concise and in writing and handed to the Chair prior to the commencement of the meeting.

8.       Closing formalities - Karakia Whakamutunga (22/2300)

Unuhia!

Unuhia!

Unuhia i te uru-tapu-nui

Kia wātea, kia māmā

Te ngākau, te tinana, te wairua i te ara takatū

Koia rā e Rongo whakairihia ake ki runga

Kia wātea, kia wātea!

Ae rā, kua wātea!

Hau, pai mārire.

Release us from the supreme sacredness of our tasks

To be clear and free
in heart, body and soul in our continuing journey

Oh Rongo, raise these words up high

so that we be cleansed and be free,

Yes indeed, we are free!

Good and peaceful

 

 

 

Annie Doornebosch

Democracy Advisor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HUTT CITY COUNCIL

 

Komiti Iti Arotake Mahere ā-Rohe|

District Plan Review Subcommittee

 

Minutes of a meeting held in the Council Chambers,

2nd Floor, 30 Laings Road, Lower Hutt on

 Thursday 23 June 2022 commencing at 2.18pm

_____________________________________________________________________________

 

PRESENT:                        Deputy Mayor T Lewis (Chair)

Cr S Edwards (via audio-visual link)  Cr K Brown

                                          Cr B Dyer (via audio-visual link)         Cr N Shaw                     

 

APOLOGIES:                  Ms M Dentice

 

IN ATTENDANCE:        Ms H Oram, Director Environment and Sustainability

                                          Ms P Rotherham, Head of Planning

Ms K Pascall, Policy Planning Manager

Mr N Geard, Principal Policy Planner

                                           Ms E Campbell, Pou Whakamahere Kaupapa Here

                                           Mr C Page, Intermediate Policy Planner

                                           Mr S Davis, Intermediate Policy Planner

Mr S Bellamy, Intermediate Policy Planner

                                           Mrs A Doornebosch, Democracy Advisor

 

PUBLIC BUSINESS

 

1.       OPENING FORMALITIES - Karakia Timatanga     

Whakataka te hau ki te uru

Whakataka te hau ki te tonga

Kia mākinakina ki uta

Kia mātaratara ki tai

E hī ake ana te atakura

He tio, he huka, he hau hū

Tīhei mauri ora.

Cease the winds from the west
Cease the winds from the south
Let the breeze blow over the land
Let the breeze blow over the ocean
Let the red-tipped dawn come with a sharpened air. 
A touch of frost, a promise of a glorious day.

 

Under Standing Order 13.10 Deputy Mayor Lewis noted that as the Chair was joining the meeting via audio-visual link, she would be undertaking the duties of the Chair for the duration of the meeting.

2.       APOLOGIES

RESOLVED:  (Deputy Mayor Lewis/Cr Brown)                     Minute No. DPRS22301

“That the apology received from Ms Dentice be accepted and leave of absence be granted.”

3.       PUBLIC COMMENT

There was no public comment.

 

4.       CONFLICT OF INTEREST DECLARATIONS

          There were no conflict of interest declarations.

5.       Minutes

Resolved:  (Deputy Mayor Lewis/Cr Brown)                        Minute No. DPRS 22302

 

“That the minutes of the meeting of the District Plan Review Subcommittee held on Thursday, 12 May 2022, be confirmed as a true and correct record.”

 

6.

Final Draft Intensification Planning Instrument (22/1039)

Report No. DPRS2022/3/116 by the Principal Policy Planner

 

The Principal Policy Planner elaborated on the report.


In response to a question from a member, the Director Environment and Sustainability said officers would have a short timeframe to make any further amendments to the draft Intensification Planning Instrument (IPI). 

 

In response to questions from members, the Intermediate Policy Planner advised the operative District Plan contained protection for Te Puni Urupā. He said this included a recession plane for all buildings and neighbouring buildings and sites. He noted this would trigger a resource consent assessment. He said any such assessment would include engagement with Mana Whenua to protect sites. He advised Owhiti Urupā was protected in the form of a setback. He said this was because the surrounding business area was not affected because of the IPI. He noted Korokoro Urupā was not identified as a community activity area or a site of significance at present. He said this would be considered as part of the full District Plan Review. He advised heritage precincts had buffer zones already included. He noted officers had been working with the RiverLink Project team in preparation for the plan change. He said the draft IPI did not contain many changes in respect to RiverLink. He advised this would likely need its own plan change as part of the full District Plan Review.

 

In response to questions from members, the Principal Policy Planner said the Medium Density Residential Standards (MDRS) would take immediate effect from when the IPI was notified. He advised it was less clear when the IPI would enable six storey buildings. He noted it was also not known when the plan change would go above the minimum requirements of the MDRS. He noted officers would be able to report back to the Policy, Finance and Strategy Committee. He said if the site coverage was amended from 60% to 50% this would not affect existing resource consent applications. He considered many developers would wait until the MDRS was incorporated into the District Plan to take advantage of the more enabling set of standards. He said there would be a reduction in the amount of development allowed if the site coverage was reduced from 60% to 50%. He noted this was in relation to residential areas only. He advised this reduction in site coverage would allow  new taller buildings near the boundary site.

 

The meeting was adjourned at 2.40pm and reconvened at 2.53pm.

 

 

The motion was taken in parts.  All parts were declared CARRIED on the voices.

 

Recommended: (Deputy Mayor Lewis/Cr Dyer)                  Minute No. DPRS 22303

 

“That the Subcommittee recommends that the Policy, Finance and Strategy Committee recommends that Council:

(1)   receives and notes the information contained in the report;

(2)   receives the Final Draft Intensification Planning Instrument attached as Appendix 7 to the report; and

(3)   directs officers to:

(a)   notify the proposed Intensification Planning Instrument by 20 August 2022;

(b)   prepare a formal evaluation report for the Intensification Planning Instrument; and

(c)   make minor amendments to the proposed Intensification Planning Instrument, as necessary.”

 

Recommended:  (Deputy Mayor Lewis/Cr Brown)                    Minute No. DPRS 22304

“That the Subcommittee recommends that the Policy, Finance and Strategy Committee recommends that Council adopts the Final Draft Intensification Planning Instrument as Council’s proposed Intensification Planning Instrument subject to the following changes:

(a)      reducing the site coverage in the high density zone from 60% to 50%;

 

(b)      reducing the walkable catchments in Petone from 1,200 metres to 800 metres; and

 

(c)      removing Wainuiomata, Eastbourne and Stokes Valley from enabling building heights and density commensurate with accessibility and demand (Policy 3(d)).”

Cr Edwards abstained from voting on part (a) above.

Cr Edwards requested that his dissenting vote be recorded against parts (b) and (c) above.

Cr Dyer requested that his dissenting vote be recorded against parts (a), (b) and (c) above.

 

7.       QUESTIONS

There were no questions.

8.

Closing formalities - Karakia Whakamutunga

Unuhia!

Unuhia!

Unuhia i te uru-tapu-nui

Kia wātea, kia māmā

Te ngākau, te tinana, te wairua i te ara takatū

Koia rā e Rongo whakairihia ake ki runga

Kia wātea, kia wātea!

Ae rā, kua wātea!

Hau, pai mārire.

Release us from the supreme sacredness of our tasks

To be clear and free
in heart, body and soul in our continuing journey

Oh Rongo, raise these words up high

so that we be cleansed and be free,

Yes indeed, we are free!

Good and peaceful

 

There being no further business the Chair declared the meeting closed at 3.09pm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Deputy Mayor Lewis

CHAIR

 

 

 

 

 

 

CONFIRMED as a true and correct record

Dated this 22nd of September 2022


                                                                                       1                                                22 September 2022

District Plan Review Subcommittee

22 August 2022

 

 

 

File: (22/2129)

 

 

 

 

Report no: DPRS2022/4/191

 

Approach to listing Notable Trees in the District Plan

 

Purpose of Report

1.    The purpose of this report is to:

a)      report back to the Subcommittee on the potential of a tiered system of listing Notable Trees in the full District Plan review; and

b)      seek direction from the Subcommittee on the approach to protecting notable trees in the District Plan.

Recommendations

That the Subcommittee:

(1)   receives the information contained in the report; and

(2)   directs officers to proceed with option 1 identified in the report for the voluntary protection approach to listing Notable Trees with a STEM score over 120 in the full District Plan Review.

For the reason(s)

·    That this approach is consistent with past and present messaging on Council’s website and previous plan changes (Plan Change 36).

·    While some significant trees may not be protected, past experience has shown that only a small percentage of property owners refuse to have their trees protected.

·    This approach gives landowners choice and will be more straightforward to implement, monitor and enforce.

 

 

Background

2.    At the District Plan Review Subcommittee on 18 May 2021, the Subcommittee identified Option 2: Status Quo, plus Nomination Process as the preferred approach to the assessment of Notable Trees in the District Plan. This option was for a continuation of the existing District Plan approach to Notable Trees, and would largely roll over existing objectives, policies and rules from the operative District Plan. The chosen option also included direction to undertake a public nomination process to identify new Notable Trees.

3.    At the 18 May 2021 meeting, the Subcommittee asked officers to investigate and report back on the potential of a tiered system of listing Notable Trees, with the most valuable trees with a high Standard Tree Evaluation Method (STEM) score requiring mandatory listing and those with a lesser score requiring voluntary listing. This report provides this assessment to the Subcommittee.

4.    There are 145 existing Notable Trees in the District Plan. Their STEM assessment results are summarised in the discussion below.

5.    A public nomination process was undertaken in late 2021. Through this process 84 new trees were nominated for STEM assessment. This includes:

·    7 trees nominated by landowners;

·    48 trees nominated by members of the public on properties where they were not the landowner; and

·    25 trees on public land (owned by Council, DHB or Schools).

6.    A summary of the location of existing and publicly nominated notable trees is attached in Appendix 1 – Location of existing and nominated Notable Trees.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7.    The STEM evaluates trees based on the following criteria:

Form:

The tree should have good form, be reliable in structure and a good example of this species

Occurrence of the species:

How common or rare the tree is within the district, regional and national context

Vitality:

The assessment of the health of the tree

Function:

 

The physical and ecological functioning and contribution of the tree. This factor also includes recognition of the local adverse effects of the tree

Age:

 

The loss of a mature tree leaves a time lapse before another tree will fulfil similar functions and achieve the same values. This factor also recognises the tree’s natural life expectancy

Stature:

 

The height and canopy spread of a tree can have a significant influence on its visual impact

Visibility:

 

The amenity value of the tree and its accessibility to the public

Proximity to other trees:

The singularity of a tree can be more important than a group of trees

Role in setting:

 

The visual and spatial qualities surrounding the tree in its setting. Many trees are significant landmarks in the City

Climatic influence:

 

The influence of a tree on the microclimate, for example: shade, shelter and temperature control

Feature:

 

Trees of exceptional proportions, or tree forms of special interest

Historic:

 

The association of the tree with historic events, people and significant periods in the development of the City

Scientific and botanical:

The significance of the tree in a scientific or botanical context, having particular regard to rarity representativeness and endemism. This factor also recognises trees of unusual genetic or morphological form.

 

Discussion

8.    Currently, the District Plan only includes notable trees where the support of the landowner has been provided. The last plan change that considered notable trees was Plan Change 36. A total of 216 trees were nominated and, following assessment, 145 of these trees were included in the plan through that plan change. A further three trees met the Notable Tree criteria but were not included as landowner support for their listing was not provided.

9.    Some landowners will and do protect significant trees voluntarily. However, there is uncertainty and a risk that landowners may not choose to protect trees identified as Notable Trees. This means that some trees that meet the notable threshold may not be scheduled and protected and, as such could be lost or damaged.

10.  The implementation of a tiered system that provides for a hybrid approach of voluntary and mandatory listing of Notable Trees would require Council to decide on the threshold over which trees are included on a mandatory basis. A threshold closer to Council’s chosen notable tree STEM score of 120 would mean that more trees would be compulsorily protected, while a higher threshold would reserve mandatory protection for only the highest value trees.

11.  A tiered approach may require more time and resource from officers through engagement with affected landowners. This includes arranging access to properties of landowners to undertake STEM assessments and potential disputes regarding the assessment result.

12.  Council’s contracted arborist (Arbortech Services Limited) has provided comment based on previous experience with mandatory tree protection in the United Kingdom, Canada and Upper Hutt. The arborist has noted that where trees are proposed to be listed and the property owners are not supportive of tree protection, tree damage or removal can occur.  Prosecution is challenging and expensive. The arborist also notes that anecdotally, when the public is aware of mandatory protection, trees are removed to prevent them reaching a level of maturity that may see them protected.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

13.  The existing District Plan’s 145 assessments have the following STEM scores:

STEM score

Number of trees

est. >120

2

120

29

123

9

126

25

129

9

132

13

135

7

138

14

141

6

144

5

147

8

150

4

153

3

156

2

159

4

162

2

168

1

174

1

183

1

 

14. Maintenance costs for protected trees is very dependent on the season.  In some years a minimal amount is spent, while in other years in excess of $50,000 may be spent, particularly if a tree fails and it needs to be removed or if a tree causes infrastructure damage. Additional funding may be required if more trees are scheduled.

15.  There is little consistency across councils for STEM score thresholds. While the threshold for protection ranges between 100 and 170, this is often reflective of the number of mature trees within a district and the rate of growth. There is little indication whether the protection of trees in these districts is mandatory or voluntary.

Thames-Coromandel District Council

170

Hastings District Council

160

Palmerston North City Council

160

Horowhenua District Council

150

Kaipara District Council

150

Marlborough District Council

150

Dunedin City Council

145

Kāpiti District Council

140

Matamata-Piako District Council

140

South Taranaki District Council

130

Tauranga City Council

130 (for native species)

150 (for exotic species)

Queenstown Lakes District Council

120

Porirua City Council (proposed)

120

Wellington City Council

110

Whakatāne District Council

108

Upper Hutt City Council

100

 

16. In Wellington City Council’s recently notified Proposed District Plan, 32 new trees have been added to their schedule. All of these trees were nominated by owners.

Options

17. 

Option 1: Voluntary protection for Notable Trees with a STEM score over 120 (Recommended).

Description

The voluntary approach to Notable Tree protection gives landowners a choice as to whether or not a Notable Tree is protected at the time of the plan change. This approach allows landowners to choose whether trees on their property are protected. If permission is not given, the tree will not be protected.

This maintains the current approach of the District Plan.

Costs

·    Some significant trees on private property that meet the STEM threshold may not be scheduled in and protected by the District Plan if permission is not provided. This could include those trees identified through the nomination process or those that are listed in the existing schedule.

·    If more trees are scheduled, additional funding will be required to provide support to landowners for maintenance costs.

Benefits

·    Continuation of current approach will be a simple process.

·    Landowners retain choice on whether Notable Tree is scheduled.

·        Minimal time and resource required from the District Plan team and Arborist.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

18. 

Option 2: Mandatory protection for Notable Trees with a higher STEM score and voluntary protection for Notable Trees with a STEM Score at or above 120 but below the high STEM score threshold.

Description

·    This option would change the plan to require mandatory listing and protection of trees identified as having a STEM score over a specified threshold. Trees assessed as having a STEM score between 120 and this threshold would have voluntary protection. This option would not give landowners of high rated trees a choice as to whether or not the Notable Tree is scheduled.

·    Council would continue to take responsibility for the trimming and removal of Notable Trees.

·    A threshold for mandatory protection would need to be decided. Some potential options have been provided in paragraph 19 below.

Costs

·    This approach will be more complicated than other options and require more time and resource from officers.

·    Some landowners would no longer have a choice as to whether or not their tree is scheduled in the District Plan.

·    This has potential to create limitations on use and development of land.

·    Additional funding will be required if additional trees are scheduled.

·    May encourage landowners who oppose protection and have trees just below the mandatory threshold to remove trees to prevent them becoming mandatory in the next review.

·    Ongoing maintenance and compliance can be more difficult if trees have not been voluntarily protected.

Benefits

·    Certainty to Council and the community that the highest value trees which exceed STEM threshold will be scheduled and protected.

 

 

 

 

 

 

19. Possible STEM thresholds for Option 2 mandatory protection based on existing 145 assessments undertaken:

Threshold option

Percentage threshold

STEM score (rounded to nearest 5)

 

Number of currently scheduled trees this would affect

a)        

Top 25%

140

37

b)        

Top 20%

145

26

c)        

Top 10%

150

18

d)        

Top 5%

160

5

 

Climate Change Impact and Considerations

20.  The matters addressed in this report have been considered in accordance with the process set out in Council’s Climate Change Considerations Guide.

21.  Trees provide a means for carbon sequestration which can mitigate the effects of climate change. The trees identified and protected in the District Plan will mitigate some effects of climate change. However, it is noted that the individual listings have a small contribution when compared to the scale of vegetation across Lower Hutt.

22.  It is likely that an increase in intensity of severe weather events will have adverse effects on the City’s Notable Trees.

Consultation

23.  General consultation has been undertaken on District Plan review to date. Minimal feedback has been received so far from the public regarding tree protection.

24.  Public involvement has been sought through the tree nomination process. This was held throughout November 2021.

25.  Greater levels of public engagement will be required under option 2, to ensure that landowners understand the tiered approach and how it may affect the protection of trees on their property.

Legal Considerations

26.  Section 6(f) of the Resource Management Act (RMA) states that the protection of historic heritage is a matter of national importance and Section 7(c) states that particular regard must be given to the maintenance and enhancement of amenity values.

 

 

 

27.  The RMA has specific requirements in terms of making rules for protecting trees in urban areas. Section 76 (4A- D) of the RMA states a rule may only prohibit or restrict the felling, trimming, damaging or removal of a tree, in an Urban Environment Allotment, if the tree is described, or the allotment is specifically described, in a schedule in a plan. Therefore, if the tree is not specifically identified, effects on the tree cannot be managed through rules in the District Plan. ‘Urban Environment Allotments’ are defined as an allotment:

a)   that is no greater than 4,000m2; and

b)   that is connected to a reticulated water supply system and a reticulated sewerage system; and

c)   on which there is a building used for industrial or commercial purposes or as a dwellinghouse; and

d)   that is not reserve (within the meaning of section 2(1) of the Reserves Act 1977) or subject to a conservation management plan or conservation management strategy prepared in accordance with the Conservation Act 1987 or the Reserves Act 1977.

Financial Considerations

28.  All options could be undertaken within the current District Plan Review budget. However, as also noted in the 18 May 2021 report, the annual budget for the maintenance of Notable Trees may need to be reviewed depending on the number of trees protected.

Appendices

No.

Title

Page

1

Location of existing and nominated Notable Trees

18

     

 

 

 

 

 

Author: Chris Page

Intermediate Policy Planner

 

 

 

 

 

Reviewed By: Kate Pascall

Policy Planning Manager

 

 

Approved By: Alison Geddes

Acting Director Environment and Sustainability

 


Attachment 1

Location of existing and nominated Notable Trees

 


Table

Description automatically generated