Australia: Construction & Infrastructure - What's News - 26 April 2016

In the media – National

Building Certifiers under the Gun
Owners corporations and strata managers have the potential to benefit from two recent decisions in Victoria and New South Wales in which building certifiers are being held accountable for work they signed off on which has been found to be defective (18 April 2016).  More...

Timeline to an election – The ABCC Bill
A federal election is now very likely to be held on 2 July 2016.  The Senate, on 18 April 2016, voted to not proceed to a third reading of the Building and Construction Industry (Improving Productivity) Bill 2014, (ABCC Bill) which would re-establish the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) (19 April 2016).   More...

Court imposes $24 000 fine and three year ban for unsafe asbestos removal
Today the Industrial Court convicted Mr Anthony Rosier from Eco Asbestos Removal Service of seven counts of unsafe asbestos removal work, including undertaking Class A asbestos removal work without authorisation (18 April 2016).  More...

Construction company fined $30,000 over 8m fall
A construction company was fined $30,000 over an incident in which an employee was seriously injured after falling eight metres through unsecured metal sheeting (15 April 2016).   More...

Malcolm Turnbull's radical plan to pay for fast train
A fast train network linking Australia's east coast capitals and regional centres could be one step closer with Malcolm Turnbull set to announce a radical new funding plan that could see plans for a high speed rail network for Australia's east coast finally start to speed up (11 April 2016).  More...

In the media – Victoria

Melbourne sky train level crossing contract
The signing of the $1.6 billion Sky Train level crossings contract will rid Melbourne of nine of the worst intersections between the road and rail networks (22 April 2016).  More...

Victorian Government to fund Western Distributor toll road
The Victorian Government will fund the proposed Western Distributor toll road, after the Commonwealth refuses to contribute to the project (14 April 2016).  More...

Victorian government's on-going commitment towards state infrastructure
The Victorian government has unveiled plans in the 2015 state budget to commit $22 billion towards public infrastructure over the next four years. The legislative body is tasked to meeting Victoria's immediate and long-term infrastructure needs are identified and prioritised based on objective, transparent analysis and evidence, in conjunction with initiatives such as Plan Melbourne Refresh (13 April 2016).  More...

Expressions of Interest open for Western Highway project
Expressions of Interest have been called for to duplicate the Western Highway from Buangor to Ararat, as work continues on the $662.3 million upgrade between Ballarat and Stawell. The Western Highway is one of Victoria's significant interstate freight routes(12 April 2016).   More...

Monash upgrade the centrepiece of Turnbull Govt VIC infrastructure Package
The Turnbull Government has committed to an additional $1.5 billion to get on with essential infrastructure to support Victoria's regions and ensure Melbourne retains its mantle as one of the most liveable cities in the world (11 April 2016).   More...

Vital upgrades to ensure safer, more secure city loop
The $11 billion dollar Melbourne Metro Rail Project will unlock the congestion in heart of the network by building a new cross-city tunnel, with new CBD stations connected directly to the city loop, with better trespasser detection and fire prevention systems to be installed in the four underground tunnels and three underground stations (11 April 2016).  More...

In the media – New South Wales

Sydney Metro opens for tender
Sydney Metro has started the tender process to build the new twin metro railway tunnels under Sydney Harbour and through the CBD for stage two of the project (13 April 2016).  More...

Demolition company fined $3,000 for failing to use mandatory WasteLocate tracking system for asbestos waste
Demolition company Perfect Demo Pty Ltd has become the first business to be fined by the NSW EPA for failing to register waste loads on the mandatory waste tracking system (14 April 2016).  More...

$17 billion in record building activity in NSW
Another record has been broken for the NSW housing industry, according to ABS figures released today, With more than 65,000 new homes under construction by the end of 2015 – the largest number since records began in 1969 (13 April 2016).   More...

High Speed Rail: We're digging a new Sydney Metro harbour crossing now
The Baird Government's ambitious Sydney Metro rapid transit project to use tube-style trains across the city has inched closer to arriving at an official total price tag after tenders were called to finally dig two new train tunnels under Sydney harbour (13 April 2016).  More...

In the media – Queensland

QLD Construction Payment Reform Needed, Subbies Say
A key subcontractor representative in Queensland has hit out at claims that the case for reform of subcontractor payments in that state has not been made, saying that the need for change is highlighted by a spate of insolvencies and a 'culture of non-payment' (21 April 2016).  More...

Coal dust reforms a priority job, says Minister
Coal dust reforms were underway as a government priority to protect the health and safety of coal workers, Natural Resources and Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham said today (20 April 2016).   More...

No plans to compete for work from licensed electrical contractors
The Palaszczuk Government has no plans for a merged power distribution company to compete for work from existing licensed electrical contractors who do solar or electrical work at the household level (20 April 2016).   More...

All board Cross River Rail, but LNP off track
Minister for Transport Stirling Hinchliffe today called on the Queensland LNP to follow the lead of their federal colleagues and get behind Queensland's number one priority infrastructure project, Cross River Rail (11 April 2016).   More...

In practice and courts - National

Consultation: GRESB Infrastructure Assessment
The GRESB Infrastructure Assessment, which offers a new global benchmark for the environmental, social and governance performance of infrastructure assets. About 40 asset owners, fund managers and other industry participants turned out to learn about the new assessment and to ask whether improved ESG performance will result in improved financial value. The submission deadline is 1 July 2016: Results will be published in October 2016. 

ABCB consultation: Fire Sprinkler Regulatory Impact Statement
The ABCB is inviting stakeholders to comment on the Automatic Fire Suppression Systems for Covered Balconies in Residential Buildings Consultation Regulation Impact Statement (RIS). The RIS assesses the problem of fire occurring on balconies of residential buildings over 25 metres and considers options to safeguard occupants in the case of a fire event. Submissions close on 26 April 2016.  More...

In practice and courts – Victoria

Announcements, Draft Policies and Plans released 2015

VBA prosecutions
Unregistered Bulla builder and plumber fined $10,000 (15 April 2016)
Unregistered builder convicted and fined $30,000  (15 April 2016)

In practice and courts – New South Wales

Announcements, Draft Policies and Plans released 2015

NSW: Register loose fill asbestos properties
Property owners whose homes have been affected by loose-fill asbestos insulation have until August to register with the Fair Trading Loose-Fill Asbestos Insulation (LFAI) taskforce (13 April 2016).  More...

NSW: Applications for Cooperative Drilling Funding close soon
All mineral exploration companies are called upon to lodge their funding applications for Stage 2 of the NSW Government's New Frontiers Cooperative Drilling program before the closing date of 29 April 2016.   More...

In practice and courts – Queensland

Announcements, Draft Policies and Plans released 2015

QLD QBCC: Public Warning – Mr Zac Mar / MR Lifestyle Constructions Pty Ltd / TS Home Services Pty Ltd
We urge consumers, contractors and suppliers to exercise extreme caution in their dealings with Mr Zac Mar, MR Lifestyle Constructions Pty Ltd and TS Home Services Pty Ltd (13 April 2016).   More...

QLD QBCC: New adjudication qualification course starts April 2016
A three day course will be delivered by Contract Administration Group Pty Ltd.  More...

QBCC Disciplinary actions
Licensees suspended or cancelled.  More... 
Licensees excluded.  More...

QLD: Regional projects in spotlight at 2016 Major Projects Series
The department's regional offices are hosting a series of Regional Major Projects Forums throughout 2016 that focus on important issues and challenges in specific regions.   More...

Cases

Probuild Constructions (Aust) Pty Ltd v DDI Group Pty Ltd [2016] NSWSC 462
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW – procedural fairness – application for order under s 69 of Supreme Court Act 1970 (NSW) to quash adjudication determination made under Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act 1999 (NSW), Pt 3, Div 2 – whether adjudicator rejected head contractor's set-off claim to liquidated damages on bases not contended for or notified to parties – where head contractor had submitted sub-contractor had no entitlement to extension of time – where sub-contractor had submitted liquidated damages claim unreasonable – where adjudicator rejected set-off claim on basis that head contractor, acting reasonably, should have granted extension of time to sub-contractor – no denial of procedural fairness.  More...

Queensland Building and Construction Commission v Sullivan & Ors [2016] QDC 086
Court accepts the arguments of the plaintiff that the references in the relevant legislation, which is the Body Corporate and Community Management Act, to the authorisation of the body corporate to remedy defective building work where there is "shelter or support adversely affected" would give an interest to it as a 10 claimant.  More...

Lloyd v Gully Concrete [2016] QCAT 036
Contractual error accepted by contractor-offer to remove slab but owner incurred substantial costs in obtaining engineer's report and having slab removed-finding that owner had a duty to mitigate any loss and did not act reasonably.  More...

Denham Constructions Pty Ltd v Islamic Republic of Pakistan [2016] ACTSC 67
BUILDING AND CONSTRUCTION – claim of debt arising under the Building and Construction Industry (Security of Payment) Act 2009 (ACT) from a failure to serve a payment schedule in response to a payment claim – application by plaintiff for summary judgment – arguable defence challenging validity of payment claim identified – application for summary judgment dismissed.  More...

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