Metro Mayors Welcome Government Leaky Home Action

24 February 2009

A meeting of the country's metropolitan city Mayors has welcomed the Government's latest step in seeking an enduring solution to the leaky homes issue.

Building and Construction Minister Maurice Williamson has written to the Mayors to say that addressing the legacy of weathertightness problems is one of his top priorities.

To that end, he has asked the Department of Building and Housing to carry out research to confirm the number of leaky homes still needing repair as the last estimate was done in 2005.

The Minister says once the Government has a clear picture of the size and scope of the residual problems, they will have a solid context in which to consider and decide on the best form of central government intervention to address those problems.

He has invited local government to have input into the terms of reference for the research to ensure it delivers what is needed to make those decisions. Auckland and Wellington City Councils have been invited to nominate a staff member to represent local government on an external reference group.

It is intended that the research will get underway this month and be completed by the end of May, with advice to the Government on a way forward shortly after.

Wellington Mayor Kerry Prendergast says the Metro sector Mayors' meeting today welcomed the move and accepted the Government's offer to participate.

"We are happy to share any information we have in respect to the weathertightness problem and to do all we can to support the Government in finding an enduring solution to this issue.

"But we also resolved to ask the Government that it continue to work with urgency on a solution once the research has been completed. Home owners affected by this issue are in desperate need of a way forward and we will continue to lobby the Government to provide them with some urgent assistance."