Resource Management Act: RMA Link: Processes: Details

The RMAlink project aims to make community participation in all Resource Management Act processes more straightforward and less time-consuming. More effective participation from those with a concern for the environment will contribute towards improving environmental outcomes nationwide.

Processes: Details

Hosted by:

Wellington Community Network
Subject Other Processes

Text Long Term Council Community Plans

The Local Government Act 2002 requires councils to prepare both Annual Plans, and Long Term Council Community Plans.

Every 3 years, councils must carry out a consultation process to identify the goals and outcomes that their communities desire for the immediate and long-term future of their region or district. They put together LTCCP's that outline the goals of the council over the next 10 years, and how they plan to achieve these. District Plan provisions can be a means of achieving stated goals, so there can be overlap of RMA and LGA functions.


  • describe desired community outcomes
  • describe the council's activities
  • provide integrated decisionmaking and coordination of resources
  • provide a long-term focus
  • provide a basis for accountability to the community
  • provide opportunities for the public to participate in making decisions

Annual Plans

In addition to the LTCCP, an Annual Plan is prepared in each of the two years between LTCCP reviews. Annual Plans set out what will be done in the next 12-month period to make progress towards achieving stated longer-term goals. Annual plans give the community an opportunity to have a say on the coming year's budget - how much should be spent, on what, and what should receive priority.

Visit your local council website for information on annual plans and LTCCP's, or ask to see copies at your local library.



PCE (2005) - Working together in Thames-Coromandel: Guidelines for Community Planning
Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, Wellington.
This report analyses the community planning process used to resolve environmental issues in the town of Whangamata. The report also draws up some guidelines on how to make the process work.

Journal Articles

Curran, S. (2004) Sustainable Development and Sustainable Management: The Interface Between the Local Government Act and the Resource Management Act.
NZ Journal of Environmental Law, Vol 8 p267-294
Article discusses the overlap of processes, and territorial authorities' responsibilities to implement 'sustainable' policy under the two pieces of legislation. Includes discussion of long-term council community plans LTCCP's.

Hutchings, J. (2004) Long Term Council Community Plans
Planning Quarterly, September 2004, p25-7.
Implications and responsibilities for Central and Local Government.

Web-Based Resources
Resources: Department of Internal Affairs - Community Outcomes Processes website.
Provides resources for local authorities to assist them to follow best practice. See 'Publications' for an extensive list of resources on facilitating good consultation processes, and obtaining public input on environmental, social, economic, cultural and heritage matters.