Having One Plan decisions sent to the Environment Court by environment groups has been frustrating for Horizons councillor Bruce Rollinson - who is not standing for re-election.

The council decided on June 25 to notify a plan change about nitrogen leaching limits, sending it out for public consultation. The change would have made its One Plan more workable, Rollinson said.

Soon after that Environmental Defence Society CEO Gary Taylor planned to write to Environment Minister David Parker, asking him to send the plan change direct to the Environment Court, or to a Board of Inquiry.

National-based environmental lobby groups are asking the minister to step in and remove local consultation, Rollinson said.


"That's just wrong in every aspect and against almost everything ratepayers believe is right, and it's at the cost of the local community."

Putting such decisions into the courts is costing ratepayers millions and leaving them no say through elected members or council-appointed independent commissioners.

Putting those frustrations aside, Rollinson said some of his council work has been rewarding.

He's happy to have facilitated a new flood management approach for the Ruapehu District. And he ensured that possum control remained a top priority following OSPRI's retreat after TB control operations.

He said he also enjoyed chairing Horizons' finance committee and keeping rate increases down by gaining support of other councillors and voting against things that are not core business.

Nominations for local body elections open on July 19, and to his mind a good regional council candidate will not be a trouble maker.

" I say that seriously, as to get things done you have to work with other councillors and have community empathy."

It was also important for councillors to understand rural issues in the Ruapehu District.

Rollinson has served on Horizons Regional Council for six years, and before that had a term as a Ruapehu District councillor.

He said it was now time to pursue other interests.