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Council implements accreditation plan

Council implements accreditation plan


Christchurch City Council is confident it can address concerns raised in a report by International Accreditation New Zealand (IANZ) on its building consent processes.


“IANZ has undertaken a very detailed and thorough appraisal of the Council’s building control processes and functions. Its final report identifies areas that need to be addressed before the Council can be granted accreditation as a Building Consent Authority (BCA),” says Chief Executive Karleen Edwards.

Areas that need to be addressed are split into two categories: corrective actions and strong recommendations. In all, there are nine corrective actions and eight strong recommendations.

“We have agreed that these must all be addressed to the satisfaction of IANZ before an offer of accreditation will be made,” says Dr Edwards.

Building Control and City Rebuild Director Peter Sparrow says the report revealed little in the way of surprises. He reiterates that the Council remains on target to achieve accreditation by the end of the year.

“We always expected that there would be areas to work on. The areas IANZ has identified are mostly to do with procedures, our documents and the way we record things such as decisions and the reasons that explain why a decision has been made.

“It needs to be remembered that the Council is involved in a process to gain accreditation. Organisations do not pass or fail, the process is one of continuous improvement until reaching the standard to be granted accreditation to the satisfaction of IANZ.”

The number of areas that need to be addressed is in line with expectation and lower than previous assessments, he says.

“No BCA has achieved accreditation after an initial assessment without any corrective actions. In its past two assessments, the Council was issued with 17 corrective actions and 21 respectively. By way of comparison, Christchurch City Council has received substantially fewer corrective actions than Auckland Council prior to it achieving accreditation following amalgamation.”

The IANZ report highlights the can-do attitude within the Council’s Building Control Group and how there are processes in place to identify and remedy issues.

“(Council) staff were very helpful and willing to engage with the team, participating in many robust discussions. In particular it was noted that the BCA had successfully used its continuous improvement process to identify and manage issues. The BCA was aware of almost all issues raised during this assessment and was already in the process of addressing a number of these, however, it should be noted that accreditation cannot be granted until all of these issues have been effectively addressed,” the report says.

Mr Sparrow says a project group is being formed to work on the issues over the next six to eight weeks.

“We will have a team of staff dedicated to addressing these issues. We already have systems and projects in place or in development that will allow us to clear these and a special project team will focus on this over the next few weeks.”

For more information and to read the report, go to:

www.ccc.govt.nz/bcactionplan


ends

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