WA Update - August 2020

10 August 2020

The WA branch committee provides an advocacy update and is delighted to welcome three new committee members.

2 - Headshots

New committee members

We are pleased to welcome three new members to our committee – Emily Mt Eyk from emerging practice, Mt Eyk (left); Kali Passmore from established practice, Gresley Abas (centre); and Michel Greenhalgh from regional practice, MCG Architects (right). 

The addition of Kali, Emily and Michel means that our committee is now truly representative of our membership base. Our committee is drawn from practices of all scales, working across sectors and project types. We look forward to continuing to deliver events and advocacy that reflect the needs of our membership. Welcome to the committee, Kali, Emily and Michel!

Advocacy

In the last newsletter, we wrote about our request for a meeting with Hon. David Templeman, Minister for Local Government, to discuss our growing concern about local government procurement processes. Unfortunately, this request was denied, and we are now pursuing a meeting with the President of the WA Local Government Association. We believe that our concerns are legitimate, and we will continue to advocate for the value that architects bring to our built environment. 

Secondly, we have been invited to meet with representatives from the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety to discuss reforms to the approval process for commercial buildings in Western Australia. The meeting is in response to a joint submission prepared by the ACA, the Institute of Architects, Engineers Australia, Consult Australia, Accredited Certifiers AU and the Master Builders Association. 

The following excerpt from our submission summarises our position: 

We believe that regulatory reform should be advancing the professions and industry to deliver the best possible outcomes for the community. There needs to be real changes to the industry, as opposed to creating ‘perceived short-term’ confidence through additional red tape/paperwork (particularly in respect to fire engineering requirements). 

Consistency with reforms in other jurisdictions is needed to ensure that the recommendations of the Shergold Weir report are implemented in a nationally consistent manner. 

In terms of the financial cost of proposed reforms, we support in general the additional cost where it is balanced by community/consumer protection. It is our view that the preliminary estimates of cost in Building commission’s submission are under-estimated. 

We will keep you updated as to the outcomes of this meeting. 

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