New policies adopted by Council
A revised Procurement Policy has been adopted by the Central Otago District Council.
The Council had been operating under a 2020 policy that was part of an audit in 2022.
This audit highlighted examples of how the Council could improve its adherence to the policy, to provide a consistent, clear approach to procurement on behalf of communities. The policy was found to be overly complex, contradictory in places, and longer than necessary.
The new policy has addressed these concerns and since her employment in May, has been developed by the Council’s Risk and Procurement Manager Amelia Lines, whose services are shared through an arrangement with Waitaki District Council. Ms Lines and the Council’s Business Support – Group Manager Dr Saskia Righarts presented a report at the Council meeting in Alexandra on Wednesday (25 October 2026).
After the meeting, Dr Righarts said Council staff were now working with a more user-friendly document.
“We also have a much more fit for purpose policy which will ensure that the Council’s procurement is more robust.”
In addition to an overall reduction in length and simplification of the Procurement Policy, a number of key changes have been made, which include the threshold for requiring an open market tender. This has been increased from $50,000 to $200,000 because:
- Market interest is often limited for tender opportunities with low values.
- Smaller local suppliers may be more inclined to respond to direct requests for quotation than open market tender opportunities.
- Inflation and ongoing cost increases have been taken into account; and
- The effort and cost involved with completing a tender exercise is significant and must be commensurate with the outcomes sought through the procurement process.
More information can be found in the Council report: https://centralotago.infocouncil.biz/
The Council also adopted a revised Risk Management Policy, which was due for renewal in October. The policy has been fully revised to enable efficient and effective risk management across the organisation. The review and revision has resulted in the policy being expanded to incorporate a framework for the management of risk that spans multiple levels and activities across the organisation, which include:
- Key Risk management
- Operational Risk management
- Project Risk management
- Operational Risk Event management