For significant or large activities, it is good practice to contact the iwi/hapū concerned to inform them and clarify their position in order to inform the development of proposals. Where there is no iwi management plan (IMP) for the area or the activity, or the activity is not included within an existing iwi management plan, good consultation practices with tangata whenua remain important. For more information on engaging with tangata whenua see Consulting with tangata whenua .
Depending on the size and significance of the application, applicants may meet with iwi/hapū to discuss their application prior to lodgement. Good practice is to consult when in doubt.
If no IMP exists for an area, councils can assist the preparation of IMPs by providing funding and/or expertise and resources to the iwi or hapū. For information on resourcing the participation of iwi/hapū in RMA processes and decision-making see Facilitating consultation with tangata whenua . There are many good examples of councils supporting the development of IMP. The Ngāi Tahu ki Murihiku Natural Resource and Environmental Management Plan 2008 was prepared with the help of a council planner, and Environment Southland provided funding support for the development of the plan. The Environment Bay of Plenty website is a good example of council support for IMP, with links to council policies, procedures and funding applications relating to iwi planning documents.