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ICNZ Satisfied Chch Consents Process Being Addressed

MEDIA RELEASE

3 July 2013

ICNZ Satisfied Christchurch City Consents Process Being Addressed

The Insurance Council of New Zealand has welcomed Government’s appointment of a Crown Manager to address issues relating to the building consents process in Christchurch and the decision to audit recent building consents to ensure they are up to required standards.

ICNZ understands that Christchurch City Council, under the direction of the Crown Manager, will still be registered with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) as the authorised body to provide building consents and any accreditation issues won’t prohibit the granting of consents or unduly impact on the Christchurch rebuild programme.

ICNZ CEO Tim Grafton said he was satisfied that the procedures being implemented would shore up the council’s capability as the building control authority and give confidence about the integrity of the process.

“Our understanding is that as the registered building control authority, the Christchurch City Council will continue to authorise consents.  We do not anticipate that losing IANZ accreditation will unduly affect the rebuild programme, it will be business as usual next week,” said Mr Grafton.

Domestic residences and commercial buildings are built to exacting standards and building codes set by MBIE and as of 1 March  2012 residential buildings are legally required to be constructed by licenced building practitioners.

“We have no reason to believe that there are significant issues regarding the consenting process that would impact on the insurability or integrity of residences and commercial buildings.  We look forward to a more efficient and streamlined processing of consents to support a safe and sustainable rebuild,” said Mr Grafton. “We will naturally keep a watching brief on developments and the outcome of the audits but at this time it’s business as usual.”

“Media-enflamed suggestions about potential legal cases if the Council lost accreditation and buildings being demolished if they were not up to code were unnecessarily fuelling anxieties of an already concerned Christchurch public,” said Mr Grafton.  “We are working on the basis that the Christchurch rebuild will continue apace and that the Council will still be the registered control authority,” said Mr Grafton.

ENDS

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