How do developers, body corporates and homeowners deal with archaeological finds when renovating homes or building on new land.  Did you know that renovating, changing, moving or damaging a pre 1900 villa means you may be liable for a large fine under the act, and the developer can be order to suspend development. All developers are aware of archaeology and the value of the past to national heritage however few realise the definitions of what is historically significant have been broadened by the Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga bill. If you are a developer who is experience delays with your resource consent or you or your workers have discovered artefacts or items of historical interest; developers have a legal requirement to act in an open and honest way. They must disclose heritage items found and forfill obligations to Hapu or Iwi stakeholders.

Heritage issues with your development site? Contact  the Queen City Law property team. Queen City Law know property development and can help your projects stay on legal, stay on time and stay on budget.auckland_villa

The Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga bill was introduced into Parliament on 4 October 2011.

Listen here for a very interesting interview with Brigid Gallagher, who is a Heritage Conservation Specialist whose company is based in Waihi. From The Weekend on 28 Dec 2014

Building on the past – Brigid Gallagher

Originally aired on The Weekend, Sunday 28 December 2014 Radio New Zealand

 The bill provided reform of the archaeological consenting process through:
  • reducing maximum timeframes to process consents, aligning them with relevant timeframes for progressing resource consents under the Resource Management Act;
  • a simplified application process for proposals that have only a minor effect on archaeology;
  •  Heritage New Zealand being required to consult on and publish its policy for administering the Act’s archaeological consenting processes;
  • a separate emergency authority process, which was agreed following the September 2010 Canterbury earthquake. This process will apply in the event of natural disasters that cause, or are likely to cause, loss of life, injury or serious damage to property, and will significantly reduce the time limit on application turnaround.
Legal Background.

From 20 April 2014, the New Zealand Historic Places Trust became known as Heritage New Zealand. This bill replaces the Historic Places Act 1993, reforms its governance structure and the archaeological authority (consent) processes established under the 1993 Act, and introduces emergency authorities to apply in the event of serious natural disasters. The Bill was introduced as The Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga bill and was introduced into Parliament on 4 October 2011. Read a related press release below.  The bill had its first reading on 08 May 2012 and its second reading on 5 December 2013.
The Bill was passed by the House on 13 May 2014 and came into force on 20 May 2014.
The Bill reforms the governance arrangements of the New Zealand Historic Places Trust and changes the name of the Trust to Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga.
The Bill introduces a number of measures, including an emergency archaeological authority in the wake of natural disasters such as earthquakes, to strike a sensible balance that minimises hold-ups while still protecting vulnerable heritage.
A National Historic Landmarks list will be established to set national priorities for heritage conservation and recognise our most important historic landmarks and precincts
“This bill will strengthen the Trust’s governance, clarify its regulatory role, and streamline its activity in relation to archaeological sites,” Mr Finlayson said.

New Zealand property law has many twists and turns so be sure to get legal advice before entering into any property contract. At Queen City Law  you get a legal team with outstanding abilities in quite a diverse range of legal matters. Our staff are insightful, energetic, dynamic and very talented and our philosophy is to focus on adding bottom line value to our clients initiatives whenever possible in a client centric manner. We currently represent a range of companies and individuals who are leaders in their respective fields in New Zealand.

See some of our client testimonials here. Queen City Law can offer you a winning team find out more about our lawyers here.