Government set to modernise Public Works Act

It aims to make the process of building infrastructure easier

Government set to modernise Public Works Act

The government has announced the modernization of the Public Works Act to ease infrastructure construction.

Minister for Land Information Chris Penk made the announcement, noting that New Zealand was facing a deficit in infrastructure. Penk said the construction of important projects such as schools, roads, water services, and energy projects failed to keep up with the country's growing needs, leading to problems such as road congestion, housing shortages, burst pipes, and electricity blackouts.

“To improve the lives of all New Zealanders and rebuild the economy we need to make it easier to build major infrastructure projects,” said Penk.

Most Read

The Act's modernisation efforts will begin with an independent panel conducting an eight-week review of the legislation. The panel will also provide advice on changes that can be made to help large-scale public projects be built faster and cheaper.

“The Act plays a key role in the delivery of infrastructure projects, but it has not been substantially amended since 1988. Users tell us it is outdated and, in certain key areas, no longer fit for purpose, meaning that some projects are delayed by up to half a decade before a shovel even hits the ground,” said Penk.

The Land Information Minister also noted that New Zealand was currently in the bottom 10% of the list of high-income countries and the amount of infrastructure delivered in relation to the cost.

“This is clearly the wrong kind of world leading. That's why the Government is updating the Act as part of wider package of reforms to make it quicker and more efficient to build infrastructure,” said Penk.

The appointment for the independent advisory panel will be decided by the chief executive of land information, which was the agency responsible for administering the Public Works Act.

“I expect the panel to conduct a short and sharp review and provide expert advice on changes to enable critical infrastructure to be delivered on time and under budget,” said Penk.

The legislation that will give effect to the changes proposed will be introduced in 2025. Afterwards, the public will be able to give their feedback during the select committee process.

Recent articles & video

Classic Cases Revisited: R v Brown – What Legally Constitutes Consent?

Succeed Legal successfully courts long-time DLA Piper partner as consultant

University of Waikato law prof takes top role at UN

Pearce IP litigation head: 'No one's died because of technology yet'

Nominations for Elite Women 2024 close next week

Three join the District Court bench

Most Read Articles

Three join the District Court bench

Lane Neave moves Wellington premises to Customhouse Quay

Kate Sheppard Chambers takes on three

Succeed Legal successfully courts long-time DLA Piper partner as consultant