City of Ryde leading advocate for change in building sector

The City of Ryde would like to set the record straight following commentary in the media that criticised
Council for not making a submission to the Regu lation of Building Standards, Building Quality and Building
Disputes parliamentary inquiry.

For the upcoming parliamentary inquiry, Local Government NSW has made a submission on the City of
Ryde’s behalf. Local Government NSW has also confirmed it will ma ke representations for the City of Ryde
as well as other local council s in the likely event it is called to attend an upcoming hearing.

The media commentary also failed to point out that the City of Ryde has been a leading advocate for
change in the building sector.

Council is on th e public record in 2018 making repeated calls to reform the private certification system in
NSW, following several examples of poor performance by private certifiers.

This includes.

Lobbying against privat e certifiers being able to approve sensitive medium density
developments, and instead make it the responsibility of Council certifiers.

Warning that allowing certain sensitive classes of development to be considered as complying
development would lead to a proliferation of medium density housing in unsuitable residential
zones certified by lax or conflicted private certifiers.

Calling on the State Government to review the process of accrediting private certifiers and the
sanctions that are applied to priva te certifiers found to have acted inappropriately.

Criticising private certification reforms outlined in NSW Government legislation, highlighting
that they did not go far enough in protecting landowners.

Recommending landowners to be adequately compensate d if they suffer from financial
hardship due to unprofessional practices of private certifiers.

In relation to combustible aluminium cladding, the City of Ryde is working with Fire and Rescue NSW and
assisting relevant property owners through strata corpo rations.

Council will continue to maintain the confidentially around the actual properties as has been requested by
Fire and Rescue NSW. This was confirmed by the De partment of Planning which this week advised
councils to decline informal requests for in formation due to the sensitivity of the cladding register
information.

The City of Ryde would reiterate that the presence of combustible cladding on a building does not
necessarily mean there is a high fire hazard as the amount of cladding, its configura tion and fire safety
provisions should all be taken into account when assessing fire safety risks.

While Council welcomes the fact that there is now a renewed focus on private certifiers and the need to
reform the overall building sector in NSW, it believes the commentary in the media was unnecessarily
alarmist and ignored much of the proactive work the City of Ryde has done in this space.

Rather than continuing to point the finger and apportioning blame, it is time for all levels of gove rnment to
work together and deliver real change that will reform the identified problems currently impacting on the
building industry. It is what the community expects and it is what the community deserves.

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