Monday, October 21, 2013


Great: our regional councils are warning dairy farmers before inspecting their RMA compliance:

Inspectors looking for evidence of dirty dairying are giving farmers up to three days warning of an inspection - which critics say is like police telling motorists where drink-drive checkpoints will be.

Information obtained from regional councils and unitary authorities by The Dominion Post under the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act shows that eight of the 17 councils give farmers at least 24 hours forewarning of inspections.

Fish & Game chief executive Bryce Johnson says this makes "an absolute nonsense" of monitoring.

"It's akin to police letting drivers know where and when they will be setting up drink-driving checkpoints."

My local council, Horizons, is one of those that warns farmers. Strangely, their compliance rating is 93%. what is it when the farmers aren't warned and don't have time to clean up and switch the pipes around? Sadly, we'll never know - but the state of the regions rivers kindof speaks for itself.

This policy is simply insanity. Spot-checks must be exactly that: unannounced, to see what the real compliance situation is. Otherwise they're just a bad joke, a PR exercise for the public designed to cover up for the dirty status quo. And that's just not acceptable.