A Christchurch city councillor is accusing council staff of knowingly tampering with the district plan.
Coastal Ward councillor David East said a policy, enabling people to build, renovate or extend their homes in South New Brighton, Southshore and Redcliffs, was at some stage omitted from the planning provisions of the district plan.
In a statement, the council said Mr East acted inappropriately when he made accusations about staff misconduct.
Acting chief executive Brendan Anstiss said staff met with Mr East recently, where he had the opportunity to talk about the clause.
He said the council is hugely disappointed that Mr East and other elected members have made serious accusations without basis.
However, Mr East said he was calling for an independent investigation, as the reported omission had caused unnecessary financial stress and affected the health of property owners.
The council had denied residents their legal rights as determined by the independent hearings' panel, he said.
He said he was not prepared to point his finger at anyone just yet.
"It is not an indictment on the mayor. You could say it's an indictment on the council as a whole. At this stage, I have no idea of [the culprit], so it would be remiss of me to say that any particular person, let alone [Christchurch mayor Lianne Dalziel] was responsible."