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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2019 Week 11 Hansard (Thursday, 26 September 2019) . . Page.. 3976 ..

Last financial year Access Canberra issued demerit points again 50 construction occupations licensees, 11 notices of intention to issue a rectification order, three rectification orders, 10 directions to undertake building work and 29 stop-work notices. In addition, so far this financial year Access Canberra has issued two notices of intention to issue a rectification order, two rectification orders, two emergency rectification orders, two directions to undertake building work, 12 stop-work notices and four controlled activity orders.

Access Canberra’s construction audit team is working to make sure that the industry is held to account and complying with their obligations. In 2018-19 Access Canberra’s construction audit team conducted 402 energy efficiency rating audits, 147 site audits for building approvals, 112 site audits for development approvals, 91 certificates of occupancy audits and 28 cost of work assessment audits.

MR PETTERSSON: Minister, can you update the Assembly on why this action is important and what further action the government has planned?

MR RAMSAY: I thank Mr Pettersson for the important supplementary question. There is a reason that we regulate various professions. It is because we think that there should be a barrier to entry to ensure that what work is done is of the highest quality and that the work meets the needs of the community. That is why we undertook over 23,000 electrical inspections last financial year. It is why we undertook over 13,000 plumbing and over 3,000 gas inspections last financial year.

Canberrans rightly expect that one of the biggest investments that they will make in their lives will be up to scratch. The action that we are taking is vital to ensure that people can buy with the confidence that the product will be of a high quality and that if it is not the builder will be held to account.

This is why we are introducing broader powers for the regulator. They will include the ability to hold directors of building companies to account and make them liable for the rectification of defects should the company be wound up to limit liability. We will be giving the regulator power to enter into court enforceable undertakings with builders to have those issues resolved. It is why we will give the regulator the power to publish stop-work notices so that the community have more information available to them when they are shopping around for a builder.

We are also looking at alternative dispute mechanisms to make it easier for consumers to find solutions to building issues. This government is focused on finding practical solutions to improve the quality of building here in Canberra. We have resolved to ensure that those who seek to work in this regulated profession do what is required of them under their licence which gives them the privilege of doing this work for the benefit of the people of Canberra.

Mr Barr: I ask that all further questions be placed on the notice paper.

Leave of absence

Motion (by Mr Gentleman) agreed to:

That leave of absence be granted to Ms Cody for today due to illness.

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