Building Stronger Foundations

Submission cover sheet

  • Name of organisation or individual making this submission

    John Taylor

  • Authorised delegate/contact person

    John Taylor

  • Position

    Fire Services Engineer

  • Organisation

    FIRE Technical Services

Questions on possible options

  1. What kind of plans should be signed off and declared by a statutory declaration?


  2. Should a statutory declaration accompany all variations to plans or only major variations?


  3. How should plans be provided to, or accessed by, the Building Commissioner?

    As pdf files, the local council should provide the storage & access infrastructure. Many councils already do this for all development applications.

  4. In what circumstances would it be difficult to document performance solutions and their compliance with the BCA?

    When it is a smoke & mirrors or BS solution, which is actually intended to cut costs.

  5. What would the process for declaring that a building complies with its plans look like?

    Independent (non-private) person compares drawings with actual building, then completes a form documenting the compliance & any non-compliances.

  6. What kind of role should builders play in declaring final building work?

    To guide the council based building inspectors through the building.

  7. Which builders involved in building work should be responsible for signing off on buildings?

    None. All sign offs should be by an independent person without financial interest in the process.

  8. Are existing licensing regimes appropriate to be accepted as registration for some builders and building designers, such as architects, for the new scheme?

    Mostly, yes. A similar scheme needs to be implemented for consultants, who create a mountain of paper with little actual substance. I have seen countless "electrical specifications" where the fire electrical part is a bad joke - referring to wrong standards or standards that were obsoleted 20 years ago.

  9. What should be the minimum requirements for a registration scheme?

    Identify the person, confirm their skills & knowledge & little else.

  10. What form of insurance should be mandatory for ‘building designers’? Why?

    Public liability & professional indemnity. To provide a means of financial recourse to rectify their stuff ups...

  11. What kinds of minimum requirements should be prescribed for the insurance policy (for example, value, length of cover, etc.)?

    $10-$20 million for services, 1.5x building value for builders. 5 years cover.

  12. What skills should be mandatory for ‘building designers’?

    Good English, CAD, understanding of the BCA, state codes & Australian Standards and their relationships, understanding the requirements & limitations of the parts of the building design that they are responsible for, including the products and/or materials.

  13. Which categories of building practitioners should owe a duty of care?


  14. What should be the scope of the duty of care? Should it apply to all or certain types of work? If so, which work?


  15. What types of consumers should be owed a duty of care?

    All. They are paying for it.

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