Covid-19 Local Government Response Unit Update – Wednesday 15 December 2021

Local Government Response Unit main page

Today’s update

Auckland’s boundary has changed today. This means that anyone may enter for any reason, but those leaving will need to be fully vaccinated or have a negative test within 72 hours of departure.

Local Government COVID-19 Protection Framework Guidance

We have updated the Local Government COVID-19 Protection Framework guidance. This is available for your reference.

Key updates have been made underneath the following headings:

  • Record Keeping;
  • Vaccinations and PCBU obligations (PDF, 956KB);
  • Vaccine Passes;
  • Requirements to check and verify Vaccine Passes;
  • Rapid Antigen Testing;
  • Hosting third party gatherings and events; and
  • Step-by-Step guide.

We also suggest that you read all aspects of the table (at the bottom of the guidance) that apply to your work in local government as a precautionary measure. 

If you have feedback on this guidance, please sent it through the inbox.

The Government has launched a vaccination assessment tool

The Government has launched an assessment tool to help councils and businesses make decisions on vaccine requirements for workers. This tool is available here: Vaccination assessment tool —

If you have already done a health and safety risk assessment before this tool was introduced, you don’t need to do a new assessment.

This tool may not necessarily be that useful for councils, as it has primarily been designed for small businesses and those without access to HR and legal advice.

  • Councils are likely to have already undertaken a more sophisticated risk assessment; however, we think it is useful for councils to see a new regulated risk assessment – as it may help inform your assessments.

The relevant COVID-19 Public Health Response (Vaccination Assessment Tool) Regulations 2021, which gives effect to this tool, can be found here.

Managing COVID-19 cases in the workplace

The Ministry of Health has released new guidance for workplaces on what will happen if an employee becomes a confirmed (or probable) COVID-19 case.

This guidance is available in the following weblink: Guidance for workplaces that have a case of COVID-19 | Ministry of Health NZ.

Also available is an overview of the Ministry of Health’s latest guidance to support response to COVID-19 exposures in general workplace settings (PDF, 108KB).   

Upcoming webinar on employment law changes relating to workplace vaccination mandates

Employment NZ will be hosting a series of public webinars on employment law changes relating to workplace vaccination mandates.

You can register in the following link: Webinars: Employment law changes relating to mandatory vaccination requirements (

The Epidemic Notice has been renewed

The Epidemic Notice has been renewed with effect from 18 December 2021.

This means, amongst other things, that elected members who attend council meetings remotely can continue to be counted as part of the quorum. 

You can read the relevant Gazette notice here.

Information on current cases, COVID-19 test sites and economic support

There are 74 new cases today. Of these new cases, 56 are in Auckland, nine in Waikato, seven in the Bay of Plenty, 1 in Lakes (Taupo and Rotorua), and one in Canterbury.

Available testing sites can be found on the Ministry of Health website: Available testing sites.

Locations of interest can be found at Locations of Interest. This is being updated as soon as information is available.

Economic assistance is available for those impacted by the lockdown, more information available on the COVID-19 website , including details of the Business Boost package.

Please share with us your approaches towards the COVID-19 Protection Framework

We would like to know how councils are implementing the COVID-19 Protection Framework in their organisations and communities. This will help us to collate information, and build a resource that will assist consistency of application across the sector (shared approach) and inform our ongoing guidance development.

If you would like to share your council’s thinking and application of the new protection framework, please email them to us at