Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The end of an era

Back in 2002, the then-government introduced the Marine Reserves Bill. The bill would have replaced the outdated Marine Reserves Act 1971, introducing a more modern statutory management regime, allowing concessions, and bringing it into line with our international commitments. Unfortunately, the government changed its mind almost immediately after the bill was introduced; it was sent to the Local Government and Environment Committee, and has languished there ever since as the oldest bill before the House.

Today, the committee finally reported back on the bill (and the associated Marine Reserves (Consultation With Stakeholders) Amendment Bill) - revealing in the process that the government had decided to withdraw it. Apparently there will now be new marine reserves legislation "next year". With, no doubt, a giant loophole in it to allow National's cronies to mine in them...

With the marine Reserves Bill's demise, the Therapeutic Products and Medicines Bill (introduced 2006) becomes the oldest bill in the House. I wonder if it will spend as long in limbo?