The Christchurch City Council will ask Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee to take urgent steps to help homeowners locked in disputes with their insurance companies.
The council today voted unanimously to write to Brownlee requesting that he urgently set up an insurance tribunal and advocacy service based in Christchurch.
Cr Glenn Livingstone pushed for the council to write to the Office of the Insurance Ombudsman asking it to set up such a tribunal, but Mayor Bob Parker said it had neither the power nor the ability to do so.
He suggested to councillors that instead they should ask Brownlee to intervene as one of the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority's responsibilities was to ensure there was an effective insurance market operating in Canterbury.
"Clearly there isn't an effective insurance market at the moment,'' Parker said.
"This needs to go to the person who could make a difference should they chose to do so.''