Privacy Policy

The purpose of this policy is to outline how Mackenzie District Council, its employees and contractors will comply with good practice, transparency and accountability including the relevant requirements of the Privacy Act 2020 for the collection, recording and handling of public, personal and official information.

Mackenzie District Council respects and protects the privacy of all people we deal with and who provide us with information. This policy sets out our approach to the privacy of personal information and is based on the principles expressed through the Privacy Act 1993.

This policy provides guidelines for the collection of personal information in general, including the operation of surveillance cameras, drones and other visual images collected by Council and the management of other personal information collected.

We need to collect personal information about ratepayers, residents and the people we interact with (our customers) in order to deliver services and carry out our statutory functions. We want our customers to feel comfortable about sharing their information with us and so this statement provides transparency about our privacy practices.

Privacy is more than a compliance obligation for us. Managing personal information with care and respect aligns strongly with our commitment to doing things with respect and trust and to be fair to everyone. Getting privacy right is fundamental to maintaining the trust and confidence of our customers and stakeholders.

This privacy statement explains what personal information we collect, how we store, use and share it, and how you can access or correct your own information. Here are a few important things to know:

  • We only collect (or generate) the personal information we really need to carry out our functions and deliver services
  • We use and share personal information only in the ways set out in this privacy statement or notified to you at the time we collect your information, or in other ways only where necessary and with a lawful basis
  • We store personal information in secure platforms and systems, and take reasonable steps to protect both electronic and hard copy information from harm
  • We keep personal information only for as long as we have a lawful purpose to use it, or for the period required by law
  • You can ask us for a copy of your personal information at any time

We may update this privacy statement from time to time, for example to reflect changes to the Privacy Act 2020 (the Privacy Act), so take another look occasionally to see what might have changed. This statement was last updated in December 2020.

Our formal Privacy Policy is publicly available from our website here.

What personal information do we collect?

We collect personal information directly from you when you engage with us. Subject to our obligations under the Privacy Act, we may also collect personal information about you from third parties (such as other councils or government agencies) where this is necessary for us to deliver services. We also generate personal information as we carry out our functions and deliver services to you. In all cases, we make sure we only collect the personal information we really need to get the job done.

The personal information we may collect or generate as part of delivering services and carrying out our statutory functions will depend on the services requested, but includes:

  • name
  • contact details, including your address, email address or phone number
  • date of birth
  • gender
  • information about your whānau or next of kin
  • financial information, including payment methods, bank account details, credit card numbers and credit information (where we have to do a credit check)
  • licence plate details, for the purposes of managing infringements
  • information about your domestic or financial affairs, for the purposes of managing hardship applications, rates rebates and debt collection
  • information about your involvement in civil defence incidents and emergencies
  • health information, for example to manage health and safety at our swimming pools
  • information about your applications for services (including for consents, licenses, and permits), such as the type of application and details of your case
  • information about properties, that may include personal information
  • dog ownership status
  • submissions or feedback
  • surveys and focus group engagement
  • complaints made to us, by you or by others about you
  • correspondence about you (both internal and external)
  • file notes of calls or meetings
  • call recordings
  • surveillance camera footage (explained further below)
  • information about your use of our website (explained further below)
  • any other information you choose to provide to us

When and where do we use surveillance cameras?

We use surveillance cameras (also called CCTV), which collect still or video footage, in a variety of places and circumstances, when this is necessary to deliver our statutory functions, such as managing infringements and ensuring that our public spaces are safe. For the most part, you will notice when we use surveillance cameras because you will see the cameras and our signage indicating that they are operating. We have surveillance cameras operating:

  • in our service centres and some of our community centres
  • in town centres
  • at the Fairlie and Twizel sewage ponds

What information do we collect about website use?

When you visit our website or use any of our online services, we may collect the following additional information about you (though please note we make no efforts to associate this with your identity):

  • generic web browser and operating system information, including IP address
  • the search terms you used
  • the pages you accessed on our website and the links you clicked on
  • the date and time you visited the site
  • the referring site (if any) through which you clicked to our website
  • the device you used to access the site

We use “cookies” to generate a lot of the information listed above, including to track the way you have used our website. Cookies are small text files that are sent by a website and stored on your computer’s hard drive. You can manually disable cookies at any time in your browser settings without affecting your ability to use our website. While cookies can generate identifiable information, we make no effort to link this information with your identity.

How do we use personal information?

In order to carry out our functions and deliver services, we need to use your personal information in the ways set out below. Where we need to use information in a way we have not anticipated here, we will only do so if required or permitted by law or with your authorisation.

We will use your personal information to:

  • make sure we can identify you, so we know we are interacting with and delivering services to the right person
  • provide you with the services you have requested, or help our associated organisations to provide you with services
  • manage the use of our facilities
  • deliver our statutory functions to investigate and respond to statutory or bylaw infringements and issue infringement notices
  • run Council events
  • manage and respond to queries, feedback or complaints
  • manage payment for services and debt collection processes
  • respond to and manage civil defence incidents and emergencies
  • provide community updates and notices, newsletters and surveys
  • manage our relationships with other local and central government agencies
  • ensure the health and safety of our staff and the public
  • review and improve the delivery of our services, including auditing quality and performance
  • (with respect to website data only) analyse website usage and improve website functionality and experience
  • meet any other specific purpose we have notified to you at the time we collect your information

When do we disclose personal information?

To meet the uses and purposes set out above, and to effectively carry out our functions and meet our legal obligations, we may need to share your personal information with other people or agencies. Where we believe it is necessary to share your personal information with a third party, we will only ever share the minimum amount required to meet our purposes.

We may need to share your personal information with:

  • our service providers and contractors, where necessary to deliver services
  • our associated organisations (including Council Controlled Organisations), where necessary to deliver services or our statutory functions, such as:
  • government agencies or industry bodies, where necessary to deliver our statutory functions, meet regulatory and reporting requirements, or otherwise comply with the law, such as:
  • NZ Police
  • Fire and Emergency New Zealand
  • NZ Transport Agency
  • Environment Canterbury
  • Civil Defence agencies (like Victim Support, Salvation Army or Red Cross)
  • Department of Internal Affairs
  • Inland Revenue
  • Poolsafe NZ
  • WorkSafe NZ
  • other councils and local government agencies, where necessary to deliver services or our statutory functions
  • a person who has requested information under the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 (‘LGOIMA’) that includes personal information about you, although where necessary, we will withhold personal information from a LGOIMA response in accordance with our obligations under LGOIMA
  • the public, where your personal information is held in a public register, such as the Rating Information Database

How do we store and protect personal information?

We use trusted third-party providers to store and process our data, including enterprise technology solutions designed specifically for local government, because we believe this is more secure and cost effective.

Wherever our data is stored, we take all reasonable steps to ensure that it is protected against loss, unauthorised access, disclosure or modification, or other misuse. As well as selecting service providers with strong security safeguards built in, we have appropriate internal policies, procedures and controls in place to ensure that personal information is protected from unauthorised use or disclosure.

We retain personal information only for as long as we need it, and in compliance with the requirements of the Public Records Act 2005. Surveillance camera footage is generally overwritten every few weeks.

What privacy rights do you have?

The Privacy Act gives you rights to request access to and correction of the personal information we hold about you. You can also take steps to control the ways we use your information (such as opting out of receiving newsletters), and you can complain to us at any time if you think we have misused your personal information.

Accessing or correcting your information

You have the right to request a copy of the personal information we hold about you (whether we have collected it from you directly or from a third party). You also have the right to ask us to correct your information if you think it is wrong.

We will need to verify your identity before processing your request but, once we have done this, we will process your request as soon as possible, and no later than 20 working days after we receive it.

We will be as open as we can with you, but there may be times when we need to withhold information from you in accordance with our obligations under the Privacy Act and/or LGOIMA. For example, we may need to withhold information about complaints we have received if we believe that releasing it would involve the unwarranted disclosure of information about someone else. If we do need to withhold information from you, we will tell you why.

If you have made a correction request, and we refuse to correct information because we believe it is accurate, you have the right to attach a statement to the information that explains the correction requested.

Asking us to stop using your information

You can opt out of receiving our newsletter or being included on any other subscription list by following the unsubscribe link at the end of the email or contacting us. You can opt out of our cookies when you use our website by manually disabling cookies in your website browser.

However, if you want us to provide you with a service, such as a consent or permit application, then we may not be able to stop using your information, especially if we’re using it to do something we’re required to do by law.

Making a complaint

If you have any concerns about the way we have managed your personal information, or you believe we have unlawfully refused your request for information, please let us know, and we will try our best to resolve it. You call us on our main number or email us at

If we cannot resolve your concerns, then you have the right to complain to the Office of the Privacy Commissioner. Details for making a complaint to the Privacy Commissioner can be found here.

Who you can contact for further information

If you have any queries or concerns about this Privacy Statement or personal data Mackenzie District Council has collected, we are happy to respond or investigate. Please contact us using one of the methods below.

Privacy Office
Mackenzie District Council
Postal address: PO Box 52, Fairlie 7949

For more detailed information about our obligations and your rights under the Privacy Act, you can refer to the Privacy Commissioner's website or call the Privacy Commissioner's enquiry line: 0800 803 909.

Privacy Policy 2021
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