In the media

Commercial Building Set For Modest Recovery: Survey
Even as the mining boom fades, the latest survey suggests that the commercial building industry in Australia is set for a modest comeback, albeit with overall levels of non-residential construction set to drop back over the next two years (21 May 2014). More...

ASIC takes civil action against Astra Resources and its directors
ASIC have started legal action against Astra Resources PLC (Astra Resources) and its directors, alleging the company illegally raised more than $7.6 million from almost 300 Australian investors between September 2011 and September 2012 (21 May 2014). More...

States urged to recycle infrastructure
The federal government is urging state governments to privatise infrastructure assets, with the creation of a $5 billion 'asset recycling initiative'. For a period of five years, the federal government will use this pool to pay state governments 15% of the price of assets sold, provided the proceeds go towards funding new infrastructure projects (19 May 2014). More...

Infrastructure investment to drive productivity gains
Property Council Chief Executive said thee $50 billion infrastructure investment pipeline (over the medium term) will provide a significant boost to competitiveness in Australia’s cities and regions. Critical infrastructure projects will help unleash the productivity potential of Australia’s cities – the powerhouses of the economy (13 May 2014). More...

Regional communities get major boost from Federal Budget
Regional and local communities across Australia will benefit from the Government's $1.3 billion commitment to community projects that improve their infrastructure, economy and quality of life under the new National Stronger Regions Fund A (14 May 2014). More...

Infrastructure Growth Package
The Australian Government will provide an additional $11.6 billion to establish an Infrastructure Growth Package that will fast-track investment in critical infrastructure across the country. The funds will be targeted at projects that grow the economy, boost productivity and create jobs (12 May 2014). More...

See the research outcomes here
Conflict translates environmental and social risk into business costs. More...
Costs of Company-Community Conflict in the Extractive Sector.  More...              

National Energy agency to be abolished
The national agency created to boost the supply of renewable energy in Australia will be abolished. Over the next eight years $1 billion will be retained to support "priority projects" already underway (13 May 2014). More...

PCA: infrastructure investment to drive productivity gains
Property Council Chief Executive said the $50 billion infrastructure investment pipeline (over the medium term) will provide a significant boost to competitiveness in Australia’s cities and regions. Critical infrastructure projects will help unleash the productivity potential of Australia’s cities – the powerhouses of the economy (13 May 2014). More...

New South Wales

GBCA certification for one of the world's most sustainble business addresses
Barangaroo South’s Tower 2 commercial building has been awarded a 6 Star Green Star - Office Design v3 certified rating (22 May 2014). More...

Western Sydney Infrastructure Plan
The Government commits on its Economic Action Strategy with a $3.5 billion Western Sydney Infrastructure Plan funded in the Budget. It will include $2.9 billion for road transport upgrades to service Sydney's second airport to be developed at Badgerys Creek (14 May 2014).  More...


New towers and theatres for Brisbane cultural precinct under draft master plan by Cox Rayner and Urbis
The Queensland government, through Arts Queensland, has released a draft cultural precinct master plan to guide future development and investment of the precinct over the next 20 years (23 May 2014). More...

Changes to Act to make construction industry payments fairer
The Minister for Housing and Public Works said the Building and Construction Industry Payments Act was created in 2004 to give builders and contractors an alternative way to resolve construction payment disputes. However, the industry wanted changes to be made to the Act (23 May 2014). More...

Independent building industry review process launches in Queensland
A free, independent system to review decisions made by the Queensland Building and Construction Commission has been established. The Commission will be offering the internal review process to builders, trade contractors, building certifiers and home owners from 1 July 2014 (22 May 2014). More...

New era in plumbing licencing and compliance
Minister for Housing and Public Works Tim Mander announces the moving of the licensing and compliance function to the Queensland Building and Construction Commission. The change is due on 1 September 2014, at which time the Plumbing Industry Council will be disbanded (22 May 2014). More...

Construction industry payments now fairer
Resolving payment disputes in Queensland’s construction industry will be easier and more transparent under changes introduced to Parliament (21 May 2014). More...

New construction industry reforms boost Queensland economy
Reforms to the QLeave scheme, passed in Parliament this week. The Government claims by reducing the QLeave levy rate for construction and building projects from 0.30 per cent to 0.25 per cent, an estimated $24 million will be saved in the construction and resource sectors (21 May 2014). More... 

QLD construction blueprint on track
A new blueprint to ensure Queensland's $60 billion a year housing and construction industry remains on track was launched by Housing and Public Works Minister. The blueprint, dubbed ConstructionQ, aims to set a long-term strategy for housing construction in the state (19 May 2014). More...


Sunsetting of the Building Regulations 2006
The Victorian Building Authority (VBA) and the Department of Transport, Planning and Local Infrastructure are currently undertaking a review of the Building Regulations 2006, which will sun-set on 6 June 2016 (22 May 2014). 

Government to dump builders warranty scheme
The Building Legislation Amendment Bill 2014, introduced this month and currently at the second reading stage, proposes that the current domestic building insurance scheme is replaced with a domestic building consumer protection fund, backed by statutory guarantee, from 1 July 2015 (20 May 2014). 

Plan Melbourne drives jobs, transport, investment
The comprehensive plan creates a clear picture of Melbourne’s infrastructure-led growth and outlines a long term plan integrating Victoria’s regional and peri-urban regions with metropolitan Melbourne (19 May 2014). 

Published – articles, papers, reports

KPMG insights: Federal Budget 2014 and the Energy & Natural Resources industries
This year's budget contained a number of announcements that will have a direct impact on the Energy & Natural Resources (ENR) industries. How these announcements impact an ENR business will depend on how and where the business operates. More...

Practice and courts

The Renewable Energy Target: a quick guide 2014
Published on 14 May 2014 by the Parliamentary Library, this quick guide provides a brief background to the Commonwealth’s Renewable Energy Target – what it is, what it costs, how it operates, and whether it is achieving its aims. More...

QBCC: Insurance Premium Table Effective 1 July 2014
Premiums include GST. For multiple dwellings: one premium is payable on each individual residence e.g. round up to next whole value. Divide the total contract value by the number of units to calculate the premium (16 May 2014).  More...

Budget 2014–15

Portfolio Budget Statements 2014–15

Budget Media Releases 2014–15

Building Australia's Infrastructure

Infrastructure Investment Fact Sheets and maps

Investment in Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects 2014
As part of the Government’s commitment to deliver vital transport infrastructure for the 21st Century, it is investing in a number of nationally significant projects. These projects will boost economic growth and prosperity, increase productivity and support thousands of new jobs across Australia (13 May 2014). More...

VIC: Changes to building in Building Amendment (General) Regulations 2014 (SR 37/2014)
Commencing on 20 May 2014, these Regulations amend the Building Regulations 2006— 
(a) to replace references to the Building Commission with references to the Victorian Building Authority; and

(b) to replace references to the Building Administration Fund with references to the Victorian Building Authority Fund; and

(c) to update other references to reflect recent amendments to the Building Act 1993; and

(d) to update certain siting requirements for consistency with planning schemes specified in Schedule 5; and

(e) to provide that the requirements for permeability and walls and carports on boundaries may be overridden by relevant planning scheme requirements; and 

(f) to make other miscellaneous amendments.


Fitzgerald v Building Professionals Board (No 2 Disciplinary Order) [2014] NSWCATOD 51
The Board's disciplinary orders 1, 3 and 4 are affirmed. The Board's order no 2 is varied from a fine of $36,000 to a fine of $25,000. PROFESSIONAL DISCIPLINE - accredited certifier - review of decision of the Building Professionals Board - review of disciplinary orders further to review of the findings of professional misconduct and unsatisfactory professional conduct by the Board - disciplinary orders varied as to amount of fine. Building Professionals Act 2005More...

Lang & Norton v Edler [2014] QCAT 153
Owner builder engaging unlicenced building contractor – Unlawful carrying out of building work – unlicenced building contractor not entitled to any monetary or other consideration for work – can claim as reasonable remuneration for carrying out building work – the amount paid in supplying materials and labour for carrying out the building work. Owner builder required to comply with conditions of Owner builder permit.  Queensland Building and Construction Commission Act 1991 Section 42 applied. Sections 43D and 44E considered. More...

Sand & Surf Design Pty Ltd v Surrey [2014] QCAT 151
BUILDING – WHERE contract entered into for kit home – WHERE a pier and footing system installed – WHERE owners allowed machinery on site without consent of builder before pier system cured – WHERE pier and footings disturbed – WHERE no testing undertaken of stem because of destructive testing – WHERE breach notice issued by builder – WHETHER notice lawful in circumstances. More... 

Chan and Mi v Kai Design & Construction Pty Ltd [2014] ACTSC 86
PROCEDURE – costs – security for costs – where the plaintiffs applied for security for costs as the respondents in an arbitration under the Commercial Arbitration Act 1986 – the Court has power under s 47 of the Commercial Arbitration Act 1986 to grant security for costs in arbitrations – whether the defendant who was the applicant in the arbitrations was an impecunious corporation – application for security for costs granted. Arbitration Act 1902 (NSW). More...


New South Wales

Notice of assent to legislation

The following NSW Bills received Royal Assent on 14 May 2014:

Mining and Petroleum Legislation Amendment Bill 2014- Act No 10 of 2014. More...

Regulations and other miscellaneous instruments

Regional Relocation Grants Order 2014 (2014-254) — published LW 12 May 2014.


Bills Progress

Construction and Tourism (Red Tape Reduction) and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2014
Introduced on 18/03/2014 Stage reached: Passed with amendment on 20/05/2014. The objectives of the Bill include reducing red tape and regulatory complexity for employers in the construction industry.

Electricity and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2014
Introduced on 20/03/2014.  Stage reached: Passed on 21/05/2014.

Building and Construction Industry Payments Amendment Bill 2014
Introduced on 21/05/2014.  Stage reached: Referred to Committee on 21/05/2014.

Professional Engineers and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2014
Introduced on 22/05/2014.  Stage reached: Referred to Committee on 22/05/2014.


Statutory Rules

No. 37: Building Amendment (General) Regulations 2014
Date of Making: 20/05/2014 Commencement: 20/05/2014 Not yet in operation: N/A.  Sunset Date: 20/05/2024 Authorising Act/s: Building Act 1993, No. 126/1993.

No. 38: Subordinate Legislation (Architects Regulations 2004) Extension Regulations 2014
Date of Making: 20/05/2014 Commencement: 20/05/2014 Not yet in operation: N/A.  Sunset Date: 21/05/2015: reg. 4 Authorising Act/s: Subordinate Legislation Act 1994, No. 104/1994.  The objective of these Regulations is to extend the operation of the Architects Regulations 2004, which would otherwise be revoked by virtue of section 5(1) of the Subordinate Legislation Act 1994, for the period specified in regulation 3.

No. 39: Survey Co-ordination Regulations 2014
Date of Making: 20/05/2014 Commencement: 20/05/2014 Not yet in operation: N/A.  Sunset Date: 20/05/2024 The objective of these Regulations is: (a) to provide for standards of measurement and accuracy of certain surveys; (b) to provide for the connection of certain surveys to existing surveys, standard traverses and permanent marks.


Contact details


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T: +61 3 9321 9919



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T: +61 2 8083 0497



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T: +61 7 3135 0614

Stephen Burton, Partner
T: +61 7 3135 0604

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