New South Wales to review building certification laws

Minister Lambert will review whether current policy objectives remain valid, and whether the terms remain appropriate for securing new objectives

This month, the New South Wales Government is commencing a review the Building Professionals Act 2005, as well as moving forward with reforms to the NSW planning system.

Assistant Minister for Planning, Robert Stokes, recently announced the appointment of former NSW Treasury Secretary, Michael Lambert, to carry out the review, with final results to be presented by the end of October next year.

This will be the first review of this Act since it commenced in 2007, coinciding with the establishment of the Building Professionals Board as the independent statutory authority for certifier accreditation. Mr Lambert is to undertake a review of section 97 of the Act to determine whether the policy objectives remain valid, and whether the terms remain appropriate for securing those objectives.

The review will also examine the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal reviews into Licence Rationale and Design and Local Government Compliance and Enforcement (IPART reviews) and identify any implications or outcomes from those reviews that relate to building regulation reform.

Mr Stokes said the review of the legislation will take into account sections of the planning reform whitepaper to deliver a concise list of recommendations for the NSW Government to consider.

“The review’s scope is deliberately broad, so it will be able to take into account all of the research and consultation that has occurred in the areas of building certification and regulation in recent years,” Mr Stokes said.

The review will involve extensive consultation with the community, councils, industry, education providers and government agencies, as well as the consideration of a number of relevant reports and whitepapers.

“All stakeholders will be able to have a say, not only about whether the Act is achieving its policy objectives but how to address issues of accountability, enforcement and governance,” Mr Stokes said.

“The division of regulatory and enforcement roles between councils, other NSW agencies and the Building Professionals Board are among these issues that will be considered.”

For more information including the Terms of Reference go to www.bpb.nsw.gov.au.