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Public Law

Our Public Law practice advises local government clients and private clients interacting with local and central government.

Acting for a significant number of local authorities across the central North Island, we are experts in the Local Government Act. We understand the diverse nature of local government and our clients’ legal, regulatory and political risks.

Tompkins Wake provides legal support and strategic advice across the entire spectrum of local authority governance and operations – from the day-to-day provision of local infrastructure, local public services and numerous regulatory and enforcement functions, to strategic advice on policy making, law reform, and long-term planning.

Our Public Law team has an in-depth understanding of how councils work and the nature of public decision-making and accountability; helping our Local Government clients to ensure their decision-making is consistent with statutory, public and administrative law obligations and wider policy frameworks.

In the private sector, we work to help our clients navigate the complexities of policy and regulation to achieve their commercial outcomes. Our experience in the local government sector enables us to establish and position commercial interests with key decision-makers.

The team works alongside specialists from across Tompkins Wake to ensure our clients have access to the operational and strategic expertise they need on every matter.

Recent examples of our work:

  • Hamilton City Council - rating review
  • Hamilton City Council, Waipa District Council, and Waikato District Council - shared services agreements for wastewater services
  • Decision-making and subsequent proceedings on fluoridation of municipal water supply
  • Iwi engagement strategy and governance
  • Local alcohol policies
  • Enquiry relating to the conduct of the 2016 local government elections

Areas of expertise:

  • Heritage Processes
  • Official Information (LGOIMA)
  • Public Works Act
  • Judicial Review Proceedings
  • Public Accountability
  • Public Private Partnerships
  • Regulatory and Enforcement Powers
  • Governance and Management
  • Decision Making
  • Services and Powers
  • Warrants
  • Law Reform
  • Roading

Public Law team

Bridget Parham

Partner

Peter Duncan

Partner

Theresa Le Bas

Partner

Linda O'Reilly

Special Counsel

Dr. Edward Willis

Consultant

Jill Gregory

Senior Associate

Megan Crocket

Senior Associate

Knowledge and insights

Tompkins Wake welcomes new Special Counsel

Monday 4 October, 2021

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Bella Vista: MBIE Report highlights failure to perform statutory functions

Tuesday 9 April, 2019

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High Court strikes out a judicial review for trade competition

Tuesday 9 April, 2019

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Government establishes new Infrastructure Commission

Tuesday 9 April, 2019

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Council's statutory demand upheld

Tuesday 9 April, 2019

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Court of Appeal guidance on obligation to pay rates

Tuesday 9 April, 2019

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Court sends warning on poorly drafted consent conditions

Tuesday 9 April, 2019

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RMA reform to start by fixing the government's blunders

Wednesday 28 November, 2018

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Email quarantine: getting it right

Wednesday 28 November, 2018

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Auckland Council's restrictions on stadium reports upheld

Wednesday 28 November, 2018

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The Government's Three Waters Review

Wednesday 28 November, 2018

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Recent decision on "affected persons" highlights the importance of context

Wednesday 28 November, 2018

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Court of Appeal Decision in R J Davidson Family Trust

Thursday 27 September, 2018

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High Court finds Council liable in negligence for damage from fallen tree

Thursday 27 September, 2018

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Bella Vista learnings

Tuesday 24 July, 2018

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Should Councillors see Council reports?

Tuesday 24 July, 2018

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New process for calculating court-awarded interest

Tuesday 24 July, 2018

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High Court guidance on HASHAA

Thursday 3 May, 2018

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New guidance on publicly available official information

Thursday 3 May, 2018

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Environment report highlights serious land issues

Thursday 3 May, 2018

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New Local Government Bills

Thursday 3 May, 2018

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Alert: Ombudsman's warning to Local Government

Friday 9 March, 2018

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Ombudsman disturbs confidential settlement agreement

Thursday 3 May, 2018

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Minister to reverse new non-notification law

Thursday 23 November, 2017

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New Bill extends enforcement powers under the LGA

Friday 15 September, 2017

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Update on RJ Davidson Family Trust

Thursday 13 July, 2017

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Requiring authority status for irrigation scheme operators

Thursday 13 July, 2017

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Bribery of a public official

Thursday 13 July, 2017

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Increased Compensation available under the Public Works Act

Monday 12 June, 2017

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