Environmental / Resource Management

Advertising Standards Authority and Local Government Reorganisation

Created: Wednesday, 04 March 2015 00:52

Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) was subject to an Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) ruling on a "misleading" super-city advertisement that pushed for the city’s amalgamation.  The GWRC advertisement appeared in the Hutt News community newspaper and promoted the Local Government Commission's (the Commission) draft proposal for the reorganisation of the Wellington region. 

Hutt City Council (HCC) complained that GWRC's advertisement breached the advertising Code of Ethics.

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Supreme Court has Last Word on Upgrading Earthquake-prone Buildings

Created: Friday, 27 March 2015 11:18

Natural disasters often test the boundaries of the law.  In University of Canterbury v Insurance Council of NZ Inc [2014] NZSC 193, the Supreme Court considered the power of territorial authorities to require work to be carried out on earthquake-prone buildings. It found that local authorities are not entitled to require that such buildings be strengthened to more than 34% of the  new building standard (NBS).


Christchurch City Council’s 2010 Policy concerning earthquake-prone buildings (the City Council Policy) adopted recommendations of the New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering that the level of strengthening required to reduce or remove the danger posed by an earthquake-prone building was 67% of NBS.

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Local Authority Powers To Impose Time-Restricted Parking

Created: Friday, 28 November 2014 03:40

In Hutt City Council v O'Connor [2014] NZHC 2290, the High Court considered the power of a local authority to impose time-restricted parking. The Judge found that the Minister could, but had not, created a rule empowering local authorities to restrict parking.


Alwyn O'Connor was issued with a parking infringement notice by Hutt City Council ("the Council") for breach of r6.4(1) Land Transport (Road User Rule) 2004 ("the Road User Rule") due to parking his vehicle for more than two hours in an area on Port Road subject to a P 120 parking time restriction.

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Council Processing Burned And Buried

Created: Thursday, 27 November 2014 03:58


The recent decision of Zwart v Gisborne District Council [2014] NZEnvC 242 provides a rare example of a costs award against a consent authority and a strong reminder that a full and proper assessment must be undertaken by an authority when processing resource consent applications.

In two previous decisions the Court declined the appeal against the decision of the Gisborne District Council (Council) to grant land use resource consents to build and operate a funeral home on the outskirts of Gisborne City. The question of costs was reserved, but the Court expressly discouraged any costs application because of issues relating to the quality and processing of the application.

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Question Of Riverbed Ownership Adjoining Maori Land Left Open

Created: Wednesday, 26 November 2014 16:46

In the final of a series of cases, the Supreme Court in Paki & Ors v Attorney General [2014] NZSC 118dismissed a claim by the appellants that they had title to part of the riverbed of the Waikato River adjoining their lands; leaving the question of riverbed ownership open. The appellants are descendants of members of various hapu that were awarded interests in land subdivided from the Pouakani block by the Native Land Court (NLC) in the late 19th century. The Courts have released this decision as being one of public interest, and a copy is available Public Sector, Environment & Resources.

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It's here so let's get to know it: The Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Act 2013

Created: Wednesday, 13 August 2014 03:55

The Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 3) (the Bill) passed its final reading in Parliament on 30 July 2014 and received the Royal assent on 7 August 2014. We have previously given an overview of the Bill, which amends the Local Government Act 2002 (the Act), and was referred to the Local Government and Environment Select Committee (Select Committee) on 3 December 2013. We also commented in more detail on provisions in the Bill relating to development contributions and local boards. You can view a copy of the Select Committee's Report from 12 May 2014 here.

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