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Building and resource consent compliance and complaints

Building and resource consent compliance issues are not always our responsibility. They may be the responsibility of the police, another government agency, or they may need to resolved between neighbours.

Compliance

Any activity that someone would like to, or is doing on a particular site must comply with the Resource Management Act (RMA) and the District Plan, or the conditions of an approved resource consent.

Council enforcement officers are responsible for enforcing the RMA, the District Plan, and compliance with the conditions of any resource consent issued.

Make a complaint about RMA or District Plan matters by emailing enforcement@huttcity.govt.nz.

Complaints

If we receive a complaint or concern about an activity we'll contact the people who are responsible. From there we can determine the degree of non-compliance (if any) and what action to take. This can range from things like rectifying the situation, or formal enforcement like fines or prosecution.

Some complaints are outside of Council’s authority. In this case, the relevant parties need to resolve the issues. We recommend seeking independent legal advice, professional opinions or engaging the services of a third-party mediator.

Citizens Advice Bureau

Photo and sound evidence

  • Photos and recordings are useful if you need to make an insurance claim.
  • If Council officers are involved they will also take their own evidence during a site visit.
  • Note: Noise apps on smartphones are not reliable for compliance purposes. Council and acoustic specialists use special instruments that have been set up so that they are accurate and admissible as evidence for enforcement.

How to complain about other issues

  • Materials or developments blocking private access ways are non-Council matters and should be dealt with by those affected.
  • Materials on public areas and pavements are not allowed and should be reported to Council.

  • Boundary disputes are not an RMA issue. They need to be handled with the neighbours, individual parties or representatives involved.
  • If you're unsure where your property boundary is, contact a licensed surveyor to check.
  • Note: sometimes the location of a fence doesn't accurately show the legal boundary line.

  • Earthworks should not cause instability to neighbouring properties. Whether a resource consent is needed for earthworks depends on the scale and location of the work.
  • Let us know if the earth is cracking or if there is a large unstable cut. You should also contact the developer about earthworks that are affecting your property. Keep in mind that ground cracking can occur naturally.

  • Noise from construction work can often cause a disturbance to neighbours close to construction sites, particularly when the works occur outside ‘normal working hours’.
  • All noisy work should, where possible be timed to cause the least annoyance to people living and working close to the site.

  • Damage to your property from a developer’s action or inaction is not a Council matter.
  • Contact your insurance company as soon as you notice any damage. If you are unable to contact the developer then your insurance company or lawyer can do this on your behalf.

Many trees in Lower Hutt are protected. If you have one of these on your property you may need consent to prune or remove the tree. To confirm if you need Council’s consent before carrying out work on a tree:

  • Resource Consents do not allow any neighbours, representatives or contractors to enter your site without permission.
  • Contact your neighbour or the site manager first and if needed report any trespass issues to the police.

  • Water overflow occurs naturally in heavy rainfall where surface water flows downhill towards a water body.
  • Neighbours should not be diverting or concentrating flow of water or blocking overland flow paths.
  • For complaints about water overflow contact our Trade Wastes team.