Australia: Construction & Infrastructure News – 14 August 2017

In the media – National

Residential construction heading for 31%, three-year collapse
Australia's economy holds the world record for the longest recession-free run, but that boom is already past its peak and there is much worse to come, according to the latest Building in Australia forecast from BIS Oxford Economics (10 August 2017). More...

MBA: Senate rejects move to muzzle building watchdog
Builders welcome Senate rejection of moves to abolish Building Code 2016, stating the retention of ABCC and Code means more schools, roads, hospitals and other crucial public infrastructure can be delivered sooner and more efficiently (09 August 2017). More...

Safety bill targets dodgy building products
A Queensland parliamentary inquiry has recommended passing a bill that affects the safety duties of building product supply chain participants (08 August 2017). More...

Construction activity soars in July
Construction across Australia has expanded at its fastest ever pace and is now at its highest level since the Ai Group began releasing the Performance of Construction Index (PCI) in September 2005 (08 August 2017). More...

Limiting depreciation deductions: What do the proposed changes mean for quantity surveying
A closer look at draft legislation by the Australian Federal Government that seeks to limit deductions on residential rental property and what these proposed changes mean for quantity surveying (03 August 2017). More...

Victoria

New projects to create thousands of new jobs and support local businesses
The Victorian Government has announced a multi-billion dollar pipeline of key infrastructure projects that will create tens of thousands of jobs across the State and boost local businesses. The updated Local Jobs First - Victorian Industry Participation Policy (VIPP) Forward Plan with 26 new projects brings the total number of Strategic Projects to 80 (10 August 2017). More...

Melbourne facing pricey road options
Premier Daniel Andrews on Monday revealed four possible routes for the North East Link, which will complete the Metropolitan Ring Road by connecting to either the Eastern Freeway or EastLink, but only one of four proposed routes for Melbourne's "missing link" freeway has a price tag within the Victorian government's $10 billion cost estimate (10 August 2017). More...

Which of the four North East Link route options is best?
After years of talk and millions of dollars spent on planning, four route options for Victoria's highest-priority road project have been released (08 August 2017). More...

Building Australia's first hydrogen refuelling station
The $9.37 million project will establish Australia's first commercial-scale hydrogen refuelling station, which will produce hydrogen from 100 per cent renewable energy using an on-site solar plant and grid-sourced wind power (05 August 2017). More...

New South Wales

Uncapped tax on new housing supply will make housing unaffordable
A Planning Circular recently issued by the New South Wales Government outlining changes to the cap on local infrastructure contributions is likely to increase the cost of housing and exacerbate the housing affordability crisis, warns the Urban Taskforce (10 August 2017). More...

Insurer move on cladding concern puts building owners, certifiers at risk
Building owners could find themselves without a way to claw back rectification costs, after insurer efforts to exclude liability for private certifiers over non-compliant cladding. The Australian Institute of Building Surveyors, last week wrote to members warning that some professional indemnity insurers were imposing 'onerous exclusions' to policies in relation to non-compliant cladding (08 August 2017). More...

Queensland

Queensland Government to target rogue waste management operators
A joint agency operation between Transport and Main Roads (TMR), Environment and Heritage Protection (EHP) and the Queensland Police Service (QPS) will begin today targeting heavy vehicles from New South Wales dumping waste in Queensland (10 August 2017). More...

Queensland recharges efforts to boost local energy security and jobs
Launching 'Renewables 400', Treasurer and Acting Energy Minister Curtis Pitt said the Palaszczuk Government was committed to continuing the unprecedented momentum in new renewable energy investment and energy storage in Queensland (07 August 2017). More...

Published

Investigation into dealings between Australian Water Holdings Pty Ltd and Sydney Water Corporation and related matters
Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC): 03 August 2017
ICAC has found that former NSW minister for infrastructure Anthony Kelly and former members of Parliament, Edward Obeid Sr and Joseph Tripodi, engaged in serious corrupt conduct in relation to their actions concerning a public private partnership (PPP) proposal by Australian Water Holdings Pty Ltd (AWH) which, had it proceeded, could have resulted in substantial financial rewards for that company and the Obeid family. More...

ACI Construction Briefs
A fortnightly communication highlighting key updates related to Australia's construction industry.
31 July 2017: ACI Construction Brief: Boom in apartments has not solved affordability problem

Australian Bureau of Statistics
09/08/2017 Housing Finance, Australia, June 2017 (cat no. 5609.0)
02/08/2017 Building Approvals, Australia, Jun 2017 (cat no. 8731.0)

Practice and courts

ABCC Code for the Tendering and Performance of Building Work 2016
The Code for the Tendering and Performance of Building Work 2016 applies to companies who wish to undertake Commonwealth-funded building work. Building industry participants covered by agreements made prior 2 December 2016 have until 29 November 2018 to ensure their agreements are Code compliant.

Infrastructure Australia's Statement of Intent 2017-19
Infrastructure Australia has responded to the Statement of Expectations issued by the Minister for Urban Infrastructure, Paul Fletcher MP, in the form of Statement of Intent. Both, Statement of Expectations and the Statement of Intent are available on the Accountability and Reporting page (31 July 2017).

New South Wales

Certifiers must avoid both actual and perceived conflicts of interest Certifiers can test their knowledge with a brief set of questions about conflict of interest provisions. Certifiers must demonstrate independence and observe strict compliance with their statutory obligations and the Code of Conduct (07 August 2017). More...

Queensland

Certifier legislative obligations
Certifiers must meet their legislative obligations by providing mandatory documentation to Queensland Fire & Emergency Services (02 August 2017). More...

Certification of adjudication applications open
The Certificate in Adjudication course for those QLS members who wish to become adjudicators under the Building and Construction Industry Payments Act 2004 (Qld) will be held on 12, 13 and 14 February 2018. More... More...

Cases

Shape Shopfitters Pty Ltd v Shape Australia Pty Ltd (No 3) [2017] FCA 865
COMPETITION – misleading or deceptive conduct – ss 18 and 29(1)(g) and (h) of Australian Consumer Law – identification of the appropriate class of persons to whom the alleged misrepresentation was made – identification of nature of misrepresentation – whether participants in commercial construction industry likely to be led into error by respondent's conduct – application dismissed.
TORTS– passing off – identification of applicant's commercial reputation – whether respondent's business activities using the name "Shape" threaten to damage or otherwise adversely affect that reputation and goodwill – application dismissed.
TRADE MARKS – claim that respondent's mark is "deceptively similar" to the registered trade mark of the applicant – identification of relevant class of persons – whether commercial construction industry is "specialised" – discussion of distinction between "wonderment" and being led into "error" – application dismissed. Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) Sch 2, Australian Consumer Law, ss 18, 29.

COI Building Group Pty Ltd v 100 Percent Plumbing Ltd [2017] VSC 418
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Pleadings – Application to amend statement of claim to make a contingent claim – Proportionate liability Part IVAA Wrongs Act 1958 (Vic) – Wheelahan v City of Casey (Ruling No 10) [2011] VSC 546 (Osborn J) considered and applied – Proposed amended statement of claim fails to plead the Plaintiff's case against the Second and Third Defendants – Application to amend refused.

Legislation

Queensland

Bills

Building and Construction Legislation (Non-conforming Building Products - Chain of Responsibility and Other Matters) Amendment Bill 2017

This publication does not deal with every important topic or change in law and is not intended to be relied upon as a substitute for legal or other advice that may be relevant to the reader's specific circumstances. If you have found this publication of interest and would like to know more or wish to obtain legal advice relevant to your circumstances please contact one of the named individuals listed.

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Authors
Scott Alden
Christine Jones
 
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