Types of hearings

Local government members are entitled to receive additional payments in addition to their annual remuneration for:

  • resource consent hearings under the Resource Management Act 1991
  • District Plan hearings, and
  • Regional Plan and Regional Policy Statement hearings.

Councils must include their hearings fees in their individual expense and reimbursement policy.

The Authority does not have any jurisdiction over fees related to alcohol licensing hearings.

Hourly rate

The hourly rate paid is to be decided by the council up to:

  • $93 an hour for a hearing member, and
  • $116 an hour for a hearing chair.

There is no annual cap on the payment of fees for these hearings.

These fees are not part of the governance remuneration pool for councillors’ remuneration and positions of additional responsibility.

Preparation time

Councillors may also be paid for the time preparing for the hearing. Preparation time may include time for reading, attending onsite meetings, or attending pre-hearing briefings and meetings.

Preparation time is paid at the same rate as attending hearings. The chair of a hearing may also be paid for time spent writing up the decision or communicating for the purposed of the written decision.

Travel time is generally not included in preparation time. Councillors may be eligible to claim a travel time allowance as specified in the current Local Government Members Determination and in their council's members' expenses and reimbursement policy.

Eligibility for resource consent hearing payments

There are different eligibility rules for Council Hearings Committee Chairs, and mayors or regional chairs. 

Chairing a hearings committee

Council Hearings Committee Chairs are paid for resource consent hearings in addition to what they are paid as chair.

Mayors and regional council chairs

Mayors and regional council chairs cannot receive fees for participating in resource consent hearings.