Camping ground owners and coastal residents are challenging Dunedin City Council plans to encourage freedom camping.
A council sub-committee heard submissions on Monday morning on a bylaw proposing trial sites for campers without onboard facilities.
Gary Griffith, who lives near one of the council's trial sites at Macandrew Bay, told the panel that campers in vans without facilities have been using his garden as a toilet.
Dr Griffith said he sees no place for such vans in a first world country, only for self-contained campers.
The owners of the Portobello Village Tourist Park, Kevin and Cheryl Charles, said freedom camping would get out of hand, forcing ratepayers to pay for drains and other facilities.
But the Motor Caravan Association told the council its approach is refreshing and it wishes others would follow Dunedin's lead.