An investigation into the way the Hamilton City Council went about expanding a city park is complete, but it will not yet reveal exactly what it asked Audit New Zealand to look at.

The council is now reviewing the report, but said it would not release the scope or cost of the audit until the final document is released at the end of the month.

Council chief executive Richard Briggs asked for Audit NZ to review the process after the Herald revealed he only contacted two men - of 36 affected owners - about its plans to buy and bowl the buildings between the existing Victoria on the River Central Park and Embassy Park.


The council wanted to gauge the willingness of the owners to sell but only developers Leonard Gardner and Matt Stark were asked.

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The council confirmed the audit report was now being checked to make sure it was factually correct and accurate.

Audit NZ will then release the final report to the council at its meetings on either June 26 or 28.


Briggs initially defended only telling Stark and Gardner about the council's confidential plans for the area up to six weeks before it was made public in the council's draft 10-year plan in early December.

In March, Hamilton mayor Andrew King supported the process taken by the council's chief executive and said the only way to stop the "foxes nibbling at the chief executive's heels" was to spend a lot of time and money on an audit.

Last week, the council voted to scale back its plans to bowl the buildings and to instead set aside $7 million to buy three undisclosed buildings between Victoria on the River and Embassy Park. It will hold the properties until the plan went ahead.