ACA Response to BMF Decision

19 July 2019

The BMF announcement to adopt a consistent national approach to reform in the Australian construction industry is welcome news.

The Association of Consulting Architects (ACA) welcomes the decision, reached at the meeting of the Building Ministers Forum (BMF) on 18 July, to adopt a national approach to implementing the recommendations of the Shergold-Weir Building Confidence report.

Prior to this meeting there was concern throughout the whole construction industry about a lack of consistency across different jurisdictions. The ACA’s recent summary of the implementation across states highlighted how difficult it is to get agreement on the major cultural and regulatory changes required to restore confidence in the quality of our built environment.

The ACA welcomes the expanded role of the Australian Building Codes Board in the development of uniform compliance and regulatory regimes across Australia. It calls on State and Federal Governments to now swiftly work together on the other key recommendations of the report. This  includes implementing consistent registration of qualified building practitioners across different jurisdictions and improving independent inspection and quality control during construction.

The ACA firmly reiterates its call for improving procurement methods to emphasise quality, safety and sustainability of the built environment over short-term profit, which ultimately results in higher costs for building owners having to rectify faulty work. It also calls for further action on the insurance crisis facing building professionals including certifiers, fire engineers and architects, noting that if professional indemnity insurance is not available or contains exclusions the consumer is ultimately the loser.