13 March 2019

Media: Daily Post
Topic: Special Housing Areas

Enquiry 

Reporter seeking update on proposed SHAs in Rotorua:

- When was the Special housing accord signed? (I have it as August 31 but want to make sure I'm right)

- What has the accord achieved or done for Rotorua in the last year? 

- This was pitched to be a solution to the housing crisis to fast track building 

- Has the council looked at any other areas as potential SHAs, if so where and when? 

- How long is an SHA process supposed to take? It was pitched as a streamlined process but on the face of it little progress has been made. 

- According to the accord the aspirational target was 200 sections consented and 150 dwellings consented in 2017/18. As of today, how many have been consented? 

In regards to the SHA at 31 Ngongotaha Rd:

- At this stage will this SHA proceed?

- What has been done to progress this to date?

- What stage is the SHA at? 

- What are we waiting on?

- What is still to come in the process?

- How has flooding as a result of April 29 heavy rain and the stream bank bridge, affected the process or decision to proceed, if at all

Subsequent further questions received:

Re Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Act being repealed partially in September and then fully later

- How does the repeal of the act affect the SHA at 31 Ngongotaha Rd?

- Is there a possibility that the SHA at 31 NgongotahaRd will not go through in time?

- Will the council aim to put any new SHA in before the repeal? If so where. 

Response

See below, in red, responses to your questions regarding SHAs and the Rotorua Housing Accord. Responses can be attributed to Operations Group Manager Henry Weston.

For your knowledge/by way of background, the Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Act 2013 came into force on 13 September 2013 and was intended to be a short-term measure to streamline and fast-track housing development.

Legislation changes that came into force in September 2016 (the Housing Legislation Amendment Bill) extended the date by which SHAs could be established by 3 years, to 16 September 2019 and also extended the date of repeal of the entire Act by 3 years, to 16 September 2021. I note you said 2020 in your email yesterday but I thought it was 2021 so you may want to check that.

The current government is not extending the legislation further, hence the 2016 repeal dates apply. Hope that helps.

Your questions:

- When was the Special housing accord signed? (I have it as August 31 but want to make sure I'm right)

Rotorua Housing Accord, not Special Housing Accord.

31 August 2017 is correct. See link to RLC story HERE

- What has the accord achieved or done for Rotorua in the last year?

The Housing Accord, which was signed with the previous Government, provided the tool for developers to pursue the option of Special Housing Area status. It also helped to highlight population growth in Rotorua and the pressures and demands that is putting on housing.

- This was pitched to be a solution to the housing crisis to fast track building

The Rotorua Housing Accord was considered to be part of the solution for reducing the local housing shortage by providing the potential for developments which meet the relevant criteria to be considered for special housing area status, which in turn provides for a more streamlined consenting process.  It is accepted that there is no one solution to the housing shortage, that it requires a multi-faceted approach.

- Has the council looked at any other areas as potential SHAs, if so where and when?

Other than the two proposed Ngongotaha developments, one of which went to the Minister for consideration, there have been no further SHA proposals to Council from developers or landowners.

- How long is an SHA process supposed to take? It was pitched as a streamlined process but on the face of it little progress has been made.

The streamlined part of the process is the consenting process. This would come after the granting of SHA status.

You would need to speak to the Minister’s office about the expected timeframe for decisions on applications for SHA status.

- According to the accord the aspirational target was 200 sections consented and 150 dwellings consented in 2017/18. As of today, how many have been consented?

The accord’s aspirational target for the 2017 / 18 financial year was 200 sections consented and 150 dwellings consented.  During the 2017 / 2018 year 159 sections were consented and 153 dwellings were consented. 

The accord’s aspirational target for the 2018 / 19 financial year is 250 sections consented and 200 dwellings consented.  Year to date (July 2018 – February 2019) we have consented 71 sections and 86 dwellings. 

There are approximately 200 more sections in the pipeline.

In regards to the SHA at 31 Ngongotaha Rd:
- At this stage will this SHA proceed?

SHA status is dependent on the Minister and whether the development (with or without SHA status) then proceeds is up to the developer.

- What has been done to progress this to date?

- What stage is the SHA at? 

- What are we waiting on?

The application for SHA status went to the Minister, who then sought further information. We are awaiting that information from the developer to then pass on to the Minister’s office.

- What is still to come in the process?

As above, regardless of the decision made by the Minister, it will be up to the developer to decide if they will progress the proposed development. If the developer decided to proceed, all relevant consenting requirements would need to be met.

- How has flooding as a result of April 29 heavy rain and the stream bank bridge, affected the process or decision to proceed, if at all

This would be a factor to take into consideration for any development.

Subsequent further questions received 12 March 2019: I've just found out that the Housing Accords and Special Housing Areas Act is being repealed partially in September and then fully in 2020 which has come as a surprise, so I've got a few extra questions to add to the below please.

- How does the repeal of the act affect the SHA at 31 Ngongotaha Rd?

- Is there a possibility that the SHA at 31 NgongotahaRd will not go through in time?

We can’t answer that at this stage. It will be dependent on the developer providing the additional information the Minister has sought.

- Will the council aim to put any new SHA in before the repeal? If so where. 

Council has received no further proposals for SHA status at this time.

_______________________________________________________________________________

Media: Daily Post
Topic: Community Trust NZ grant

Enquiry

Re announcement of latest NZ Community Trust grants:

The Rotorua Lakes Council has been granted $45,000 "towards costs associated with community activation aspects of Crankworx 2019 in Rotorua" from the New Zealand Community Trust, and I was wanting to know what types of activities the council plans to use the funding for?

Response

Funding goes towards resources required to support the delivery of Crankworx related community activations. These events include Kidsworx, the dual slalom events at the ‘Wattles’ and the Canon Deep Summer Photo Competition. The resources could include (but are not limited to) items such as fencing, toilets, traffic management, screens and sound equipment.

Page reviewed: 25 Mar 2019 3:12pm