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3 May 2017 

Wairarapa Chamber of Commerce submission to Local Government Commission

The membership were recently asked via a survey if they supported the amalgamation of the South Wairarapa, Carterton and Masterton Councils into one Wairarapa District Council. 90.3% said yes they supported amalgamation and 9.7% said no they didn't support amalgamation.

Members comments about the draft proposal via the survey were taken into account and incorporated into the submission.

Read the document here.

Media Statement

18 July 2016

Hon Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga

Minister of Local Government

Government Response to ‘Loopy Rules’ Report

Local Government Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga today released the Government Response to the Rules Reduction Taskforce (RRT) “Loopy Rules” report.

The Taskforce was set up in 2015 to hear from people about what property related rules and regulations stop them from getting on with the job.

“The Taskforce report published in September 2015 provided a wealth of information about rules that New Zealanders found did not make sense or were inconsistently applied,” says Mr Lotu-Iiga.

The report identified 75 opportunities to improve the way rules and regulations are developed and implemented at a local level. Of those, the Taskforce highlighted ‘Top Ten Fixes’ that needed action.

“The Government accepts 72 of those opportunities and work is underway across Government to address them,” Mr Lotu-Iiga says. “The Government Response provides detailed analysis of what actions are being taken now and in the future”.

“Customer service was identified by the Taskforce as an issue for many New Zealanders seeking building and resource consents and generally dealing with property related matters. Many of these customer service issues require culture change at local level and we will work with councils to address this,” says Mr Lotu-Iiga.
“We received valuable feedback from a wide cross-section of New Zealanders. Too many rules and regulations hold our communities back.
“I would like to encourage the public to continue to let us know of any frustrating property related rules they experience by emailing”

To view the Government Response to the Rules Reduction Taskforce Report and related information, go to:


The ‘top ten fixes’ recommended by the Rules Reduction Taskforce last September:

• make it easier to get building consents
• get serious about lifting the skills of the building sector
• make it easier to get resource consents
• reduce the cost of consenting fees
• sort out what ‘work safety’ means and how to do it
• make it clear what the rules are
• establish a new customer focus in the public sector
• introduce a stakeholder engagement approach to developing local government policies and regulations
• reform the Local Government Act 1974 and the Reserves Act 1977, and
• stop making loopy rules.

When and why was the Rules Reduction Taskforce set up?

The Taskforce was set up in response to findings in the Productivity Commission Report “Towards Better Local Regulation” in May 2013. This report highlighted that productivity in the building sector was being negatively affected by unnecessary red tape, excessive bureaucracy and property related rules and regulations that were not-fit-for-purpose.

Who was on the Rules Reduction Taskforce?

The Taskforce included 11 experienced representatives from industry, business, government, local government and community organisations. Details can be found at:

How did the Taskforce get the public involved in the submission process?

Submissions were made at public meetings in 49 locations nationally, by using social media and also by written submissions through: Close to 2,000 topics were covered in submissions, demonstrating a high level of public engagement.

Who did the Taskforce consult with?

The Taskforce engaged with a wide range of stakeholders including home owners, businesses, tradespeople, developers and local government.

What was the extent of the Taskforce’s findings?

There were 75 opportunities identified for improving the way property related rules and regulations are developed and implemented.

People were struggling with rules and regulations that were:
• outdated;
• overly bureaucratic;
• difficult to interpret;
• inconsistently applied; and
• disproportionate to the scale of the projects underway.

How are government agencies responding to the Taskforce Report’s findings and recommendations?

Progress is outlined in the Government Response to the Rules Reduction Taskforce Report to be found at: Government agencies involved in responding to the Report include:

• Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment
• WorkSafe
• Ministry for the Environment
• Department of Internal Affairs
• Treasury
• Land Information New Zealand
• Department of Conservation
• Ministry of Health
• Ministry of Transport
• Ministry of Justice
• State Services Commission
• Ministry of Education.

Who will monitor progress on the initiatives being implemented to improve rule-making and implementation?

Ministers are responsible for the responses led from their portfolios. The Government is actively monitoring progress through reports to Business Growth Agenda Ministers. These Ministers meet regularly to coordinate and drive progress on the Government’s Business Growth Agenda. The next report back on progress will be in February 2017.

I know of problems with property related rules, what can I do?

If you have experienced frustrating property related rules you can email: Your message will be passed on to the relevant agency to consider.

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