Plan to address council work culture issues

RACHEL YOUNG
Last updated 05:00 06/12/2013

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The Christchurch City Council's work culture has again been highlighted as an issue in a government report.

Environment Minister Amy Adams ordered an examination of the council's resource consenting arm after International Accreditation New Zealand revoked the council's certification to issue building consents.

The newly-released report finds the council's relationships with other agencies are generally positive. However, it says there "are clearly significant tensions between the Christchurch City Council and the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority which are impacting on effective recovery".

Consultation with external agencies about the council's culture found it was risk-averse, rule-following rather than solution-oriented, and maintained a "business as usual" approach despite the post-quake situation.

Seventeen recommendations are made in the report, including addressing the organisational culture and relationship issues and clarifying the role of the Urban Design Panel and improving its relationship with the development community.

Adams said there were several issues with the council's consenting function, but these could be easily resolved.

Council general manager strategy and planning Michael Theelen said staff had provided an action plan to address recommendations.

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