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Privacy statement

Your privacy is important to Tauranga City Council. This Privacy Statement covers our collection, use and disclosure of your personal information as well as our obligations and your rights as set out in the Privacy Act 2020

In this Privacy Statement, the Council is referred to as “we”, “our” or “us”.  We may change this Privacy Statement from time to time.  The most current version will be available online.

Certain services and facilities we provide, or submissions, applications or requests you make to us, may be subject to additional terms and conditions and privacy statements.  Therefore, we recommend that you carefully read the terms and conditions and any specific privacy statements that apply at the time you sign-up to use our services, facilities or make a submission, application or request to us.

What kind of personal information we collect

We need to collect personal information for numerous reasons.  However, we will only do so when this is necessary for a lawful purpose connected with one of our functions or activities.

The personal information we collect may include your name, date of birth, address or area you live in, email address, telephone numbers, age, gender, household arrangement, prior criminal convictions, and pictures or video footage of you. It may also include information on your use of our services or facilities.

We may also collect personal information regarding your communications and interactions with us.

When we collect your information

  • We may collect personal information about you when you, or someone authorised to act on your behalf, provides information to us directly.  For example, when you:
    • apply for employment with us;
    • communicate with us, whether in person, by letter, phone, text, email, instant messages or other means of electronic communication, including in relation to any payment you make to us;
    • complete and submit forms we provide for applications for consents, licences, approvals, permits, funding or other authorisations;
    • use, or register for, any of our services or facilities, including our online services and apps, online payment services, libraries and hire of Council facilities;
    • submit a written submission, request or other feedback in relation to applications for consents, licences, approvals, permits, funding or other authorisations, or in relation to any form of draft or proposed plan, policy, bylaw or other document;
    • subscribe to any of our newsletter or update services; 
    • follow or post comments in response to our social media or other facilities such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube; or
    • appear in any images and audio from Closed Circuit Television or body cameras, as described below.
  • We may keep a record of any information that you acquire from us.
  • We may monitor and record phone calls made to or by us for quality control or staff training purposes.  If a call you make to us, or that we may make to you, is to be monitored and recorded, you will be informed of this at the time of the call.
  • We may collect personal information about you from other organisations or persons, such as:
    • Our related organisations including Council Controlled Organisations
    • Our suppliers which include organisations such as:
      • Government organisations such as Land Information New Zealand and the New Zealand Police;
      • QV;
      • Solicitors/conveyancers;
      • Our website hosting or internet service providers;
      • Consultation providers (e.g. for surveys);
      • Our suppliers, contractors or service providers in relation to goods, works, services and facilities they provide on our behalf;
      • Credit reporting agencies; and
    • Other organisations and persons where you have expressly authorised them to provide us with information.

When you visit one of our websites, we may use technology solutions such as “cookies” to provide you with better access to tailored information and services on the websites and to better serve you when you return to them.  A cookie is a small data file that a website or app sends to your device, which may be stored for later retrieval by the website or app.  If you want to disable cookies, you may do so by changing the settings on your browser.  However, if you do so, you may not be able to use all the functions on our websites.

We use Google Analytics to further understand how some of our services may be improved.  Google Analytics relies on the use of cookies.

We use non-personalised statistics to monitor site traffic, to analyse trends, to gather demographic information about those who use our services, to improve our services and to improve user experience.  These anonymised and/or amalgamated statistics do not include personal information.

CCTV

“Closed Circuit Television” (CCTV) capturing both sound and footage, is used in particular areas to monitor passenger and traffic movements, secure Council facilities such as libraries and recreation centres, monitor public places in order to help reduce crime and anti-social behaviour, and to promote community safety.

Signage indicates where CCTV equipment is operating. CCTV footage will only be viewed by authorised staff and representatives from public law enforcement agencies (e.g. the NZ Police) in accordance with the purpose noted above, or when checking that the system is operational.  No attempt will be made to identify individuals from CCTV footage except in cases of reported or suspected incidents requiring investigation, or in relation to any legal proceedings.

Body-worn cameras 

Cameras may be worn by our enforcement officers (for example: our parking wardens and animal control officers) as a deterrent to anti-social behaviour towards them and to provide a clear record of events if an altercation occurs.  Our staff may operate the cameras continuously while they are on duty in public places.  Footage from cameras may be used as part of any reported or suspected investigations, or in relation to any legal proceedings.

Drones

We may use drones to support project work.  This includes conducting condition assessments of our building, land and infrastructure assets, undertaking surveys of our property and capturing other property work under development.  If we fly over private property for the purpose of survey works, we do so only with the relevant land owner’s consent.  We do not use any footage of privately-owned properties without this consent.

Our use of drones is conducted in accordance with Civil Aviation Authority’s rules and guidance.

Live streaming of Council meetings and photo/video footage at civic events

In the interests of making our decision-making process transparent and accessible, public meetings of Council, its committees and subcommittees are broadcast live online and then made available on our website.   

Most of the filming at meetings of Council, its committees and subcommittees will cover elected members (or the Commissioners during the term of the Commission) as they speak and debate at the meeting, and of staff presenting on reports and answering questions.  However, the filming may also include shots of the public in the background and of anyone speaking at the meeting (such as in the public forum or at hearings on submissions).  The footage will be publicly available and can be accessed from our website.

Other types of public meetings and events organised by council may be livestreamed, but you will be notified of this by signage at the entrance to the venue and/or by other communication prior to or at the meeting/event.

We may also take photos or video footage at civic events in Tauranga (e.g. citizenship ceremonies and other public or community events that we manage) for internal or external publications.  Signage on display or other communication at an event will let you know if photography or filming will be taking place.  If you do not want to be included in any photos or video footage, please talk to one of our staff members present at the event.

How we use your information

The personal information that we collect from you, or someone authorised to act on your behalf, may be used by us for any of the following purposes:

  • To provide you with services or facilities - including those you have requested, applied or registered to use and those our Council Controlled Organisations provide to you.
  • To confirm your identity.  This is to ensure we provide you with appropriate and relevant services and information, and to avoid inappropriate release or use of your information.
  • To respond to correspondence or to provide you with information or services that you have requested, including in relation to any submission you have made to us.
  • To process your application for any consent, licence, approval, permit or other authorisation for which you have applied.
  • To process your application to use or to register for any of our services or facilities, including our online services.
  • To manage your membership or use of any of our services or facilities.
  • To process payments received, or made, by us.
  • To respond to your correspondence, requests, enquiries or feedback, or for customer care related activities; including communicating to other persons you have authorised us to deal with on your behalf.
  • To seek your feedback on our services or facilities you have used.  This will help us better understand who is using our services and facilities and how these can be improved. 
  • To assist us in analysing, and further developing and improving our services and facilities.
  • To provide you with information about our events, news, services or facilities, or the events, news, services or facilities of our Council Controlled Organisations, that we consider may be of interest to you.
  • To comply with relevant laws and regulations, including the storage of information on public registers (e.g. Rating Information Database). 
  • To carry out activities connected with the running of our business or operations such as personnel training, testing and maintenance of computer and other systems or processes, or ensuring the information we hold about you is consistent across the organisation.
  • To update any information that we currently hold about, or in connection with, you in our existing records, databases or systems.
  • For any specific purpose which we notify you of at the time your personal information is collected.
  • For general administrative and business purposes.
  • For any other purposes that you authorise.

Sharing your information

We may disclose personal information about you to:

  • Any person or organisation we use to provide goods, works, services or facilities to you on our behalf, where your personal information is necessary for the provision of those goods, works, services or facilities.
  • Our agents, suppliers, contractors, service providers (including website hosting providers) and any other third parties to the extent this is necessary to make our services and facilities available to you, or in connection with any of the purposes set out in this statement.  We will only provide such third parties the relevant information required for the provision of the services and facilities, and the third parties are prohibited from using such personal information for any other purpose.
  • Our Council Controlled Organisations, in order to assist with the functions and services that they provide.
  • A third party if we are required to do so under any legislation, or in the course of legal proceedings or other investigations. This may include:
    • sharing footage from our CCTV or other surveillance cameras (such as footage from body worn cameras) with the New Zealand Police or other public-sector agencies where criminal activity is reported or is the subject of an investigation or court proceedings.  The NZ Police may also access live feeds from certain CCTV cameras from time to time for law enforcement, investigation and emergency response purposes;
    • governmental organisations, such as Inland Revenue Department or Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment; or
    • a debt collector agency to recover overdue materials or charges.
  • Any person we may notify you of at the time we collect your information, and any person to whom you authorise us to disclose your personal information.
  • Any person, if that information is publicly available.  For example, information held on property files or our Rating Information Database, or livestream footage of meetings of Council and its committees and subcommittees.
  • Elected members (or Commissioners during the term of the Commission) and the public when you make a submission or petition to the Council.  Submissions may be made available in full (including the submitter’s name and demographic information) on our website and at our main office.

What if you do not provide us with the personal information requested?

If you do not provide us with all of the personal information about you that we request from you, we may not be able to adequately respond to your correspondence, process any applications you have submitted, provide the services or facilities you have requested, process payments or otherwise deal with any requests or enquiries you have made.  In some circumstances, failure to provide information when requested may be unlawful, and/or result in legal consequences.  These circumstances and the potential consequences will be explained to you when your personal information is collected.

Keeping your information secure and accurate

We take reasonable steps to ensure personal information is:

  • protected against loss, damage, misuse and unauthorised access;
  • accurate, up to date, complete, relevant, and not misleading.

How long we hold personal information

We may retain all personal information that we collect (on both our active systems and our archive systems), for as long as administratively necessary, in accordance with the Council’s Records Retention and Disposal Policy and relevant legislation.

The Public Records Act 2005 requires us to retain “protected records” indefinitely.  In some circumstances, your personal information may be included within a protected record, including submissions you make in relation to bylaws, annual or long-term plans, and district planning instruments.

Accessing and correcting your personal information

You may request confirmation of whether we hold any personal information about you and you may request access to your personal information that we hold by contacting us (details provided below).

Once we have verified your identity, we will provide you with such confirmation and access unless one of the grounds for refusal to do so under the Privacy Act applies. 

You may request that the personal information we hold about you be corrected by contacting us (details provided below).  If we agree that your personal information is to be corrected, we will provide you with an amended record of your personal information, if requested. 

Your rights of access to and correction of any personal information we hold about you are subject to the procedures set out in the Privacy Act.

Redacting submissions

When publishing public submissions online and in Council documents, we can choose to redact words and/or sentences that include:

  • offensive or threatening language or remarks, including swear words or words in breach of legislation;
  • any information that identifies people, including our staff;
  • personal contact details.

We may, at our discretion, redact and paraphrase an entire submission if we feel the content is not relevant and/or breaches any of these guidelines.

How to contact us

If you would like to contact us about anything in this Privacy Statement, including if you would like to request access to or correction of your personal information, please contact us at:

Tauranga City Council 
Email address:  info@tauranga.govt.nz
Postal Address: Private Bag 12022, Tauranga, 3143
Phone: (07) 577 7000
In person at our Customer Service Centre: 91 Willow Street, Tauranga

This Privacy Statement was last updated on 1 July 2021.

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