Resource consent madness for sports clubrooms

Dunedin City Council is going through a lengthy hearing process as part of implementing it’s ‘second generation’ district plan.

There’s a number of contentious issues. One in particular affects me, as the Council wants to severely limit what sort of building I can erect on some of my land simply because it is over 1o00 meters altitude and some people don’t want to see buildings on hills.

Another issue was highlighted this week. Sports clubs are complaining that the new plan would require them to hire out their facilities.

The council has said this is because functions in clubrooms can affect neighbouring property owners.

Does this mean if someone wants to have a fiftieth birthday function an elderly neighbour could oppose resource consent because rock music might be played? Ok, that’s probably a silly example, but it seems to be a very silly new limitation on people doing what they want with their property.

The ODT reported: Rugby clubs fear for viability

Dunedin rugby clubs fear changes mooted in the city’s next-generation plan could put their and other sports clubs’ financial futures in doubt.

Representatives from Kaikorai and Dunedin rugby clubs yesterday told the six-member 2GP district plan hearings panel they were worried the plan would limit their ability to hire out their facilities for events, which was an important source of income for some sports clubs.

The changes were proposed as part of the introduction of recreational zoning in the Dunedin City Council’s 2GP.

The changes could require sports clubs to apply for resource consent when they hire out their facilities for events not related to sport.

So a sports function doesn’t need consent but a children’s Christmas party would?

In response to the clubs’ concerns, council policy planner Jacinda Baker suggested in a report tabled at the hearing that hiring out sports and recreation facilities for conference, meetings and functions could be relaxed from a non-complying to discretionary activity.

Ms Baker argued against making such events a permitted activity.

“While I recognise that clubs do hire out their clubrooms for these types of activities, I consider that these are only appropriate where they are a minor component of the club’s activities and, if occurring at a commercial scale or frequency, I consider that they are more appropriate to be located within the commercial and mixed-use zones.”

Allowing clubs to hire their facilities had the potential to affect neighbours.

We can’t have neighbours affected, can we. That would be a diabolical development in a city.

She said her position was supported by the 39 noise complaints received by the council between 2000 and 2015 relating to five rugby and football clubs having late-night functions.

That’s about two and a half complaints per year, and it doesn’t say whether it involved multiple complaints about one function.

And it doesn’t say if those were non-sports related events when the complaints were made, so it’s not clear if there is any problem with hiring out facilities for non-sports uses.

I have some local knowledge here, back in the day I played rugby for Kaikorai and attended many sports events at their facilities. I was involved in running some of them.

The last event I attended there was the club’s centenary a few years ago. I presume they needed resource consent to put up the marquee.

If council clampdowns ruin the viability of sports clubs that are already struggling for members, players and funds then there may be no more anniversaries.

This looks like local body bureaucracy gone mad. Nanny city stupidity, where everyone is able to dictate what other citizens can’t do.