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Council Building Levies Could Be Detrimental

16 December 2004

Council Building Levies Could Be Detrimental

New Zealand First housing spokesperson Brent Catchpole says he’s concerned that excessive council levies will cause property developers and home handymen to operate illegally and without proper regard to building regulations.

Mr Catchpole’s comments follow reports that the North Shore City Council’s building levy has added thousands of dollars worth of extra costs to minor building alterations as well as small-scale subdivisions and building a new home.

“The whole point of the Building Act is to ensure that developers comply with building regulations and certification procedures, but when the cost of simple construction goes through the roof, developers and handymen are going to go underground,” said Mr Catchpole.

“The building industry is already suffering from insufficient resources to keep pace with the number of housing consents being agreed to by councils. Extra hurdles like very large compliance costs will only further hinder the industry.

“The real problem is that both territorial authorities and private certifiers are unable to keep pace with housing construction and as a result corners are being cut. Adding excessive compliance costs on to this to counteract the problem is in reality only going to make it worse,” concluded Mr Catchpole.

ENDS


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