The High Court has ordered a Northland businessman to pay more than $14,000 in costs to the Whangārei District Council after failing to obtain a summary judgment against the territorial authority.
Malcolm Daisley took WDC and lawyer Wayne Peters to court, alleging a number of breaches pertaining to a commercial quarry he operated on Knight Rd in Ruatangata.
Late in 2004, Daisley bought a block of land which he said included an open-ended land use consent for quarrying rock from 1988.
Between February 2005 and August 2009, WDC issued abatement and infringement notices and an enforcement order and said the quarry's operation was an unconsented and unlawful use of the land.
Further notices were issued and in August 2009 the council applied to the Environment Court for an enforcement order preventing any mineral extraction for up to 16 months.
The council withdrew its notices a month later after the land use consent documents were discovered by an employee of Peters, acting for Daisley.
Daisley claims the council's breach of its duty of care resulted in loss of revenue, diminished his property's value and he incurred losses while making resource consent applications. He has since sold the quarry.
In the High Court, Daisley said WDC breached its statutory duty under the Resource Management Act and was negligent when issuing the abatement, infringement and enforcement notices.
His claim against Peters was that the lawyer was instructed to advise him as to whether WDC was responsible for the infringement actions and on his options against WDC.
Justice Anne Hinton declined to grant leave for Daisley last year to make an application for summary judgment because she was not satisfied WDC had no arguable defence.
She said Daisley's application was out of time, being brought two-and-a-half years after the key factual matters became known to him.
In a recent judgment on costs, Justice Hinton ordered him to pay WDC $14,000 in costs and a further $95 in disbursements.
Daisley's main claim against WDC and Peters is still before the court.