24 Mar 2015

Govt wants IPENZ decision overturned

10:00 pm on 24 March 2015

The Government is asking the High Court to overturn a decision by the Institution of Professional Engineers (IPENZ) to drop its investigation into the man whose company designed the CTV Building.

Rescuers stand at the smoking ruins of the CTV building.

Rescuers stand at the smoking ruins of the CTV Building. Photo: Marty Melville / AFP

The six-storey office block collapsed during the February 2011 earthquake, killing 115 people.

Nick Smith

Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith (file photo) Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

In February last year, IPENZ dropped its investigation into Alan Reay's role in the design of the building after he resigned from the professional body.

It stated at the time it did not consider it had the jurisdiction to investigate a former member.

The man Dr Reay hired to design the building, David Harding, also resigned from IPENZ before an investigation could be completed.

However, in this case, the High Court ruled IPENZ did still have jurisdiction.

Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith said it was important that those responsible for the building's flaws were held to account.

"We think it's important both from the engineering profession learning every possible lesson from the collapse of the CTV Building."

Dr Smith said the law also needed to be clarified as to whether a professional could avoid disciplinary proceedings by simply resigning.