Victoria will work with the states, territories and the Commonwealth to raise building standards across Australia, following concerns stemming from flammable cladding and structural crack in buildings.
The landmark agreement was reached between the nation’s ministers responsible for the building industry at the Building Ministers Forum in Sydney.
The agreement means the Australian Building Codes Board will be expanded, better resourced and force greater engagement from the building industry.
The ABCB will be tasked with preparing a national framework to efficiently guide implementation of recommendations from the Shergold Weir Building Confidence report, particularly for highly complex buildings.
The states and territories also agreed to work towards a coordinated approach on professional indemnity insurance, this will be developed further in consultation with the industry in the coming months.
The Building Ministers Forum followed the Andrews Labor Government’s announcement of a $600 million combustible cladding rectification package this week.
The Labor Government is the first in the world to comprehensively audit apartment buildings, identify those posing an unacceptable risk to residents and have a clear, funded plan to fix them.
Mr Wynne lobbied the Commonwealth to support the states through cladding rectification, however the Federal Government has continued to rule this out.
Given the major role Commonwealth laws play in our building system – across the National Construction Code, company laws and the lack of border control for flammable cladding, it is fair and reasonable they partner with Victoria in the interests of community safety.
Housing and apartment construction is a significant contributor to Victoria’s workforce and market confidence is essential for both our economy and the safety and wellbeing of residents.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Planning Richard Wynne
“We’re working with the rest of the country to make sure people can have faith in our building system – everyone has a right to buy a property and know it’s been safely built.”
“We’ve had productive talks but remain concerned the Commonwealth is shirking their responsibilities when it comes to helping fix combustible cladding.”