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Smith seeks Beehive eviction

Hon Nick Smith
National Party Building and Construction Spokesman

12 April 2005

Smith seeks Beehive eviction

National’s Building and Construction spokesman, Nick Smith, today lodged a formal complaint with the Wellington City Council seeking the Government’s eviction from the Beehive for non-compliance with its new Building Act.

“I am sick and tired of Labour passing laws that restrict the lives of ordinary New Zealanders but which it does not follow itself. This is the same Act that prohibits New Zealanders from doing building work on their own homes.”

Section 363 of the new Building Act, which came into effect on 31st March, prohibits the use of any part of a building where a building consent has been granted but no code compliance certificate has been issued.

The Speaker has conceded in member’s questions that a building consent has been granted for the refurbishment of four lower floors of the Beehive but no code compliance certificate has been issued. The complaint has been filed against the Hon Margaret Wilson as Speaker of the House responsible for the Beehive.

“It is extraordinary that the Speaker is ignoring a law she introduced when she was a Minister. Those running this country seem to think they are above the law as they forge paintings, speed in Ministerial cars, and break their own building laws,” says Dr Smith.

“This botched new Act is causing havoc within the building industry. The Department of Building and Housing estimates that 70,000 public buildings are in breach of this provision. This non-compliance has very serious consequences for insurance of buildings, as most policies are invalid if any law is breached. The responsible Minister, Chris Carter, and his department of Building and Housing have acknowledged that section 363 requires amendment.

“I am taking this action out of extreme frustration. Labour has known of this problem for months but has done nothing to remedy it. Last week it blocked the introduction of my Building (Remedial Measures) Members Bill to correct the problem.

“My preference is to evict Labour from the Beehive by more conventional methods but it will be just desserts if their own silly law does it prematurely,”says Dr Smith.


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