Latest news

Builder fined $45,500 for negligence and incompetence

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

A builder whose work was so poor it constituted 'gross negligence' and 'gross incompetence' has been fined the maximum penalty and will not be able to operate as a registered builder for a minimum of three years.

At a Building Practitioners Board (BPB) inquiry held at the offices of the Victorian Building Authority (VBA) today (3 Feb), David Brayer, who operated as Statbay Pty Ltd, was accused of four allegations relating to the competency and standard of his work. Mr Brayer did not attend despite pleading not guilty.

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Improved licensing and registration process launched on 1 February 2016

Friday, 29 January 2016

From Monday 1 February, the VBA will be implementing an improved system of registration and licensing for plumbers and builders. The new process is designed to deliver better outcomes for Victoria's building and plumbing industries and consumers by making the system simpler to use, which will ultimately reduce the regulatory burden on industry. The system guides applicants through the registration process making it easier for them to see if their supporting qualifications meet the necessary standards and if not, what more is required to be provided before submitting an application.

The aim is to improve the clarity, consistency and transparency of the application and assessment processes. Changes will focus predominantly on internal procedures for processing and assessing applications.

New application forms, templates and supporting materials for Plumbing and Building (Domestic Builder and Demolisher) are now available to use on the VBA website. These materials will help streamline the registration processes and significantly reduce delays caused by incomplete or missing information. New material for the remaining building categories and classes will be progressively introduced from 1 February.

Any applications received before 1 February will be processed under existing processes. We encourage potential applicants to apply using the new forms, although we will continue to accept applications on existing forms until 30 June 2016.

These changes reflect our commitment to delivering best practice industry regulation.

We will provide regular updates about changes in the remaining building categories on the VBA website and in VBA Mail.

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New Australian Standards information sheets now available

Friday, 29 January 2016

As part of the ongoing effort to ensure that Australian Standards are up to date and reflect current best practice, Standards Australia published revised versions of AS/NZS 3500.1 Plumbing and drainage Part 1: Water services (30 June 2015) and SAA HB 39: Installation code for metal roof and wall cladding (16 July 2015).

Both of these documents form part of the Victorian plumbing regulatory regime, making compliance with them mandatory for all licensed and registered plumbing practitioners working in the plumbing classes that reference Standards.

In order to assist plumbing practitioners to adjust to the updated requirements, the VBA has developed information sheets outlining the changes.

These two information sheets, along with similar information sheets covering other Australian Standards can be found in the practitioner section of the VBA website.

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Take the ABCB Condensation Stakeholder Survey

Friday, 29 January 2016

The Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) is currently running a survey on condensation in residential buildings.

The purpose of this survey is to gather evidence and feedback on condensation problems as well as gain an understanding of the building industry's capacity to manage condensation risk in new residential buildings.

The results of this survey will allow the ABCB to find the most appropriate non-regulatory and regulatory solutions for possible inclusion in the National Construction Code.

The survey will be open until Sunday 14 February, 2016.

For more information and to access the survey, visit the ABCB website.

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Updated Australian Standards for plumbing and drainage and mechanical services

Friday, 29 January 2016

Standards Australia has published revised versions of four Australian Standards relating to plumbing & drainage and mechanical services.
The following three updated publications were published by Standards Australia on 14 December 2015 and replace the previous editions; 3500.4:2003, 1668.1:1998 and 1682.2:1990.

  • AS/NZS 3500.4:2015 Plumbing and Drainage Part 4: Heated water services
  • AS/NZS 1668.1:2015 The use of ventilation and airconditioning in buildings Part 1: Fire and smoke control in buildings 
  • AS/NZS 1682.2:2015 Fire smoke and air dampers Part 2: Installation

The fourth updated publication, AS/NZS 1200:2015 Pressure equipment was published on 3 December 2015 and replaces the previous edition AS/NZS 1200:2000.

The updates have been published to bring the Standards into line with the Australian Building Codes Board protocol for referenced documents and to improve the technical content.

Plumbing practitioners are expected to comply with the updated editions of the standards as these now form part of the plumbing regulatory framework.

Updated Standards can be purchased from the SAI Global website.

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Register now to attend an ABCB NCC Seminar

Friday, 29 January 2016

Places for the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) 2016 National Construction Code (NCC) Seminar Series are filling up fast.

The national seminars, running in February and March 2016 are presented by the ABCB and Standards Australia. These seminars will be held in each Australian capital city and will provide valuable information to building and plumbing practitioners on the changes included in the NCC 2016, which comes into effect on 1 May 2016. The ABCB will be holding their Victorian seminars in Melbourne on 16 and 17 March 2016.

From 2016 onwards, the NCC will only be updated once every three years, so this seminar series is expected to fill up fast.

To register for a seminar or to find out more visit the ABCB website.

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