David Hammond provides advice to local councils through his company Hammond Robertson Ltd and is an Associate of EquiP. He has been very active in assisting organisations including LGNZ and MBIE to understand the freedom camping issue, is frequently sought out by the media on the subject and is currently developing a Freedom Camping Strategy for Nelson City Council.
David recently completed his last nine years of a local government career as Chief Executive over two iconic tourism councils and assisted the sector by establishing the Tourism Council Workgroup in 2015. He was recognised for his contributions in the tourism field in 2010 winning both the Tourism Industry Association award for best project in local government in support of the tourism industry, and also won the NZ Post / SOLGM Award for Best Project in Local Government that same year.
Most recently, David has been working on webinars for EquiP, informing councils on how to develop an effective freedom camping strategy.
To learn more about EquiP's webinar offerings, click here.
David’s Role: Partnership Chairman & Project Leader
Kia whanake to rohe; Kia tu pakari ai te whanau. In the wake of the Central North Island’s recession even before the GFC, was a region with the worst economic performance in New Zealand. GDP stagnated at 0.1% growth (2.9% nationally) and the population of the region was fast declining.
Iwi, with a population of 24% of that region, stood to lose disproportionately.
From 2009 until its conclusion in 2011, David led the $2.8M project, pulling together three councils, over 120 tourism businesses, 12 different iwi, four regional tourism organisations, the Department of Conservation and the Ministry for Economic Development.
The highly successfully regional collaboration won national awards from both the tourism and local government sectors. Importantly it achieved 90% satisfaction from tourism businesses and Ruapehu enjoyed 0.2% economic growth in 2010 (compared to national decline of -2.5%).
With $6.5M of local property rates committed to tourism in the period, David calculated that a further $26M from external funders was leveraged.
The programme was a sea-shift in regional tourism, paving the way for a new era for the integration of Maori into a regional growth structure.
Instead of Maori being only commercial tourism operators or ‘stakeholders’, in this region Maori were equal partners and the strategic plan began with parties signing off on Treaty of Waitangi principles.
David led the response to Coromandel’s approach to freedom camping, including successfully defending a legal case, overseeing new bylaw development, and fronting the issue on behalf of local government in the media.
He has an excellent local and national understanding of the issues and the strategies for addressing problems. David says, “I know our sector is looking for law change to address issues. I personally don’t believe that is needed. There is a lot that councils can do with the powers they have before looking to Central Government.”
Extending his role to become the founding chairman of the NZ Tourism Councils Workgroup, David liaised with government ministries, local councils, the Tourism Industry Association, LGNZ, NZMCA, rental companies and the NZTA. He is an advocate for a combined approach nationally.
David’s team led the model to address Cathedral Cove visitor pressure through a public/private partnership carpark which would not only pay back construction, but the ongoing maintenance of the walkways – a collaboration with DoC and iwi.
David’s leadership on Coromandel pathwayed a nationally innovative funding model to achieve visitor funding of infrastructure, such as toilets in tourism locations.
Pictured here is paid carparking put into Hot Water Beach which earned $169,000 from visitor fees between 2013 and 2016. The money raised was ringfenced for the building of a new toilet and shower block for visitors at Hot Water Beach in 2016.
Date updated: 15 August 2017