Builders urge Ramsay to release ‘conflict’ opinion

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THE ACT government’s latest building industry reform will cause unnecessary harm to the territory’s many quality builders, says Master Builders ACT.

The training and lobby group is concerned that the proposed “Building and Construction Amendment Bill 2019” will create unintended consequences and is calling on the ACT government to release the legal advice that addresses a potential conflict with Commonwealth Law.

Master Builders ACT CEO Michael Hopkins.

Master Builders ACT CEO Michael Hopkins said: “The ACT government should be prioritising the 24 reforms outlined in the ‘Building Confidence Report’ as agreed by the nation’s Building Ministers rather than experimenting with draconian laws which will hurt those builders performing quality work and do nothing to deal with the legacy buildings identified in the recent building quality inquiry.

“The ACT Building Act already gives the Building Regulator significant powers to direct the rectification of defective work, issue demerit points and impose financial sanctions on license holders and individual nominees.”

“The Minister should be supporting good-quality local builders and encouraging them to set an example for other builders to follow.”

Mr Hopkins said he was concerned the Minister’s proposed laws would discourage new entrants from entering the building industry, increase compliance and insurance costs and discourage experienced directors from joining the boards of local building companies.

“These proposed laws potentially break an important principle of Australian company law which separate the liability of individuals and companies,” he said.

“The MBA is calling on Minister Ramsay to release the legal advice he received that addresses the potential conflict between the proposed ACT law and any Federal law or regulation.”

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