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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 6 Hansard (8 June) . . Page.. 2086..

(1) As of 1 May 2006 (a) how many Housing ACT tenant accounts were in debt and (b) what was the average amount of debt per account

(2) Of the accounts in debt, how many, both in numbers and percentage terms, were less than $1,000.

Mr Hargreaves

: The answer to the member's question is as follows:

(1) (a) As of 6 May 2006 the number of HACT tenant accounts in debt were:

(i) 1,566 rent accounts

(ii) 2,071 sundry accounts.

(b) As of 6 May 2006 the average amount of debt per account was $470.49.

(2) There are 3166 accounts (87.05%) in debt less then $1,000.00. This includes rent accounts (1,229) and sundry accounts (1,937).

Housing ACT-multiunit complexes

(Question No 1138)

Mrs Burke asked the Minister for Housing, upon notice, on 10 May 2006:

Of the existing multi-unit public housing complexes managed by Housing ACT, (a) when was an assessment undertaken to ensure complexes are compliant with current Building Code of Australia (BCA) standards and (b) which complexes were assessed as being compliant with the BCA standards.

Mr Hargreaves

: The answer to the member's question is as follows:

(1)(a) An assessment was undertaken in 1999 of 25 multi-unit properties each having more than 40 dwellings by Ecumenical Housing Inc.

(b) The report found that overall the structure of most buildings was sound but that many buildings did not conform with current Building Code of Australia (BCA) requirements with two aspects particularly noted - balustrades on stairwells and the lack of fire rated doors.

Many buildings in the ACT and also across Australia do not comply with current BCA requirements. There is nothing unusual in this. There are processes in place where significant upgrades or expenditure on an asset triggers a requirement to upgrade to current BCA standards. Notwithstanding this the Department does work to ensure that the buildings do remain safe, as can be seen in the progressive upgrading of the fire safety capacity of many of the multi-unit sites.

The report also noted that a detailed assessment of each site was not possible - time, budget and lack of consistent information about the site and building plans.

A detailed BCA assessment would require intrusive/destructive investigation of the building fabric.

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