6 Aug 2014

Builders frustrated with consent delays

12:09 pm on 6 August 2014

A Christchurch building leader says the industry is frustrated with delays in the consents issuing process.

A Christchurch building leader says the industry is frustrated with delays in the consents issuing process.

The Canterbury Registered Master Builders Association has complained about delays issuing building consents in Christchurch. Photo: PHOTO NZ

An International Accreditation New Zealand (IANZ) audit released on Tuesday highlighted 17 areas for improvement in the Christchurch City Council's consenting processes.

The council was stripped of its building consent authority in May 2013, due to its slow handling of applications post-earthquake, and it remains without accreditation.

The Canterbury Registered Master Builders Association said many consents were being issued outside the legal 20-day period.

The association's president Alastair Miles said frustrated builders were responding to delays in a way that may be counter-productive.

He said many companies were double-booking inspections, because it could take up to twelve days to be visited by building inspectors, and they did not want to wait that long for a follow-up visit if they failed. "It's probably not helping because it is clogging the system up," he said.

Building and Construction Minister Nick Smith said the Christchurch City Council should be back in the business of issuing consents by Christmas.