NSW Newsletter March 2022
It is a great honour steering the NSW sub-branch committee at a time of great change brought about by the Office of the Building Commissioner and Construct NSW. The government’s wide sweeping measures implemented to restore consumer confidence in residential construction have been felt by many of our state members. With such foundational changes afoot, the need for the industry to have a voice has never been so crucial. This in turn, has led to ACRA forming its strongest relationship with state government to date.
While we have been quiet in sharing our wins, the committee has worked hard to ensure your concerns are heard. There are four strands to delivering our strategy: advocacy, education, events and alliances. Special mention to members’ Peter Johnsson, Grahame Vile, Harvey Wellman, Helen Kowal and Deborah Lockhart, who all started in an unofficial capacity mid-last year, putting in many voluntary hours and showed an ever willingness to say ‘yes’.
Our efforts contributed to early amendments to the Design and Building Practitioner regulation to clarify exempt works and led to specific remedial education on Fair Trading’s website. To support this, ACRA’s website has built a dedicated NSW news section and, courtesy of Swaab, produced a series of flowcharts to assist with interpreting the new laws. (We note March amendments need to be reviewed for their impact.)
This month, the committee is involved in the testing of the NSW Planning Portal, which will soon allow non-DA works such as remedial waterproofing to be uploaded directly. We have also submitted a paper to Construct NSW agitating for changes to the BCA compliance requirement to ensure Design Practitioner members are adequately protected.
Later this month will see the launch of ACRA’s remedial waterproofing course on Construct NSW’s learning platform, which is squarely aimed at strata managers and owners. Thank you to our sponsors for making this a possibility. Also in education, ACRA will be participating in industry consultation of the new national waterproofing license.
In 2022 will also see us resume more face-to-face events – hopefully! We are finalising a date for an in-person event with Construct NSW director Matthew Press, and a full calendar of events that stretch beyond the technical. These will run alongside National’s webinar series and in-person training days.
Snapshot of ACRA NSW’s activities:
- Pushed for clarifications on the DBP Regulation
- DBP Regulation flowcharts (courtesy of Swaab) https://acrassoc.com.au/publications-and-resources/reference-library/
- NSW news section https://acrassoc.com.au/news/nsw-news/
- Submitted paper on BCA compliance to Construct NSW
- Planning portal for Remedial
- Remedial waterproofing course for strata managers
- Events calendar
Our industry has been referred to by a senior government official as the ‘Wild West’. In context, our industry has had little regulatory oversight and there are few barriers to entry. Some attention from the government is needed. And, at ACRA NSW, our mission is the same as it has always been, to create a clear message to the regulators and to the market: ACRA members are the trusted remedial professionals.
-NSW State Sub Branch President