Review of Walking Access Act refreshes our role and purpose

Outcome: People know how to find access

The Commission’s tenth birthday bought with it a legal requirement that its governing legislation, the Walking Access Act, be reviewed to see if it is doing what it is supposed to do and is still relevant.

The Commission welcomed the review of its legislation which was run by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) and supported by a small, independent panel chaired by Dr Hugh Logan.

The Commission’s chief executive Ric Cullinane said the review was a great opportunity for people to have their say about public access to New Zealand’s outdoors.

"We encouraged all those who have a passion for creating and protecting public access to the outdoors to get involved during the consultation phase in early 2019."

The Commission actively supported the review encouraging people from around New Zealand to give their feedback and providing regular advice, information and support to MPI.

By the time the MPI finished seeking public feedback for its review hundreds of people and organisations had shared their thoughts - far more than the Commission or MPI initially expected.

"This review offers the chance to reflect on ten years of the Commission’s work, and to ensure we are best placed to make the best of opportunities for public access in the coming years," said Cullinane.

Results of the review will be published soon. At the time of drafting this Annual Report it was with the Minister for Primary Industries, who will present it to Cabinet for its consideration.