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Construction stakeholder talks - 11 July 2019
Executive Director John Gelavis has joined a select consultation group reviewing the Local Jobs Bill. The bill’s objective is to help build and diversify Western Australia’s economy by ensuring the benefits from projects within the energy, mining and construction sectors flow through to local businesses and create more jobs for West Australians. The bill intends to cover privately funded projects and public-private partnerships projects where the value of the project is $500million or more.
Easier access to home loans - 11 July 2019
The Australian Prudential Authority’s decision to relax its mortgage serviceability buffer will make it easier for new applicants to get home loans. The buffer required new borrowers to have the financial capacity to cope with a mortgage interest rate of at least seven per cent, which is much higher than current market rates. Dropping the restriction is expected to assist recovery in the home building industry.
Infrastructure fast track - 12 July 2019
Master Builders is lobbying both State and Federal governments to deliver major capital works programs. More shovel-ready infrastructure projects including civil and social infrastructure such as education and health facilities need to emerge to spur growth, create jobs and get the economy moving.
Jobs incentive - 11 July 2019
On July 1, Premier Mark McGowan launched the Jobs and Skills WA Employer Incentive which aims to increase the number of apprenticeships and traineeships across the state. The scheme will be funded through the redirection of payroll tax. Employers who have lodged a training contract for registration on or after July 1 will receive a base payment of up to $8500. Master Builders has raised concerns with the Department of Training and Workforce Development as well as Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery that employers can’t access the incentive if they are eligible to receive payments for their apprentice or trainee from the Construction Training Fund.
Metronet tax scrapped - 4 July 2019
Planning Minister Rita Saffioti has announced the State Government is dropping the planned levy for Metronet apartment developments to help pay for new rail infrastructure. The tax was first flagged in 2017 but Ms Saffioti said: “We assessed value capture options and have decided not to proceed with a model, to help support the local property and housing market.”
Interest rate drop - 4 July 2019
The Reserve Bank of Australia this week decided to reduce interest rates to 1 per cent. Master Builders called on the big banks to pass on the rate cut fully and immediately. The interest rate drop has come at a good time, alongside the WA Government’s housing stimulus, to help the WA economy get moving again. We are also calling for an acceleration of infrastructure works, to boost the beneficial effect.
Housing stimulus launch - 4 July 2019
The changes to the Keystart income limits came into effect on July 1 and will run for six months. Executive Director John Gelavis joined the Premier, Housing Minister and Treasurer for the launch this week. Master Builders proposed and promoted the stimulus to the WA Government on behalf of members and we are pleased to see it come to fruition.
School building work opportunities - 27 June 2019
Master Builders welcome the State Government’s investment of nearly $10million on upgrades at public schools in the 2019-20 financial year. This means work for builders to improve administration blocks, toilets and assembly areas at schools across metro and regional WA. Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery says the work will support the economy and create jobs.
Cladding and Canberra talks - 27 June 2019
Executive director John Gelavis has been in Canberra this week for the strategic meeting of Master Builders leaders from all states. Among the issues discussed were the troubles over flammable cladding, which are in the news across Australia. In Victoria, media outlets have reported that building activity could halt because higher risk ratings for cladding-affected buildings have left surveyors struggling to get insurance. In New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria registered building surveyors must have professional indemnity insurance without any exceptions. In Western Australia, surveyors may have exceptions but this leaves them open to risk.
Jobs and skills incentive - 20 June 2019
The Jobs and Skills WA Employer Incentive gives financial assistance to businesses employing an apprentice or new trainee and who lodge the contract for registration on or after July 1. The incentive is part of the State Government’s Our Priorities: Sharing Prosperity plan to create 150,000 jobs by 2023-24. The aim is boost opportunities by helping employers meet the costs of employing an apprentice or trainee.
Infrastructure WA moves ahead - 20 June 2019
The McGowan Government has passed the Infrastructure WA legislation. Master Builders is a strong supporter of this initiative, which is intended to promote long-term planning of major infrastructure projects by the WA Government based on public interest, rather than short-term political outcomes. The model is based on similar Federal and state government agencies.
Professional indemnity concerns - 11 June 2019
Professional indemnity insurance is becoming a significant problem for building surveyors and certifiers nationally. Policy exclusions and price hikes in the wake of cladding fires such as London’s Grenfell and Melbourne’s Lacrosse mean many surveyors may be unable to renew policies and therefore undertake certification services. Master Builders is working on options to limit the impact on the profession and the building industry overall.
Changes to the Small Business Development Act - 11 June 2019
Executive Director John Gelavis joined Small Business Minister Paul Papalia on Tuesday to announce protection for sub-contractors through changes to the Small Business Development Corporation Act. The Small Business Commissioner will have the power to investigate complaints by small operators about commercial conduct.
Interest rates hit all-time low - 4 June 2019
The Reserve Bank cut interest rates from 1.5 per cent to 1.25 per cent this week, which brings the official cash rate to a new record low. The move was widely predicted, including in previous editions of Express, and it marks the end of the longest-ever period without a change in the interest rate - almost three years, from August 2016 to May 2019. The Reserve Bank has cut rates 12 times since the end of 2011 and we have not seen an increase since late 2010.
WA talent rounds out Morrison’s inner circle - 28 May 2019
Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s new Federal Cabinet includes Christian Porter as the Industrial Relations Minister while also retaining his Attorney General role. Assistant Treasurer Michael Sukkar will be responsible for the housing portfolio. Master Builders fought hard at the election on housing tax and the need to keep the ABCC to stop construction union bullying and we appreciate the PM’s support on both. We also welcome the strong line-up of West Australians in the new ministry, including Mr Porter, Finance Minister Mathias Cormann, Employment Skills, Small and Family Business Minister Michaelia Cash, Indigenous Australians Minister Ken Wyatt, Defence Minister Linda Reynolds and Assistant Minister for Regional Development Nola Marino.
Election results - 23 May 2019
It was pleasing to see housing become a hot topic in the Federal election campaign, with both major political parties promising support for first home buyers. Our nationwide Strong Building Strong Economy campaign successfully championed policies such as retaining the Australian Building and Construction Commission, keeping negative gearing, supporting small businesses and boosting jobs. The negative gearing message resonated strongly with many people in the wider community
Federal help for first home buyers - 16 May 2019
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced a new First Home Loan Deposit Scheme. The scheme will allow eligible home buyers to pay a deposit as low as 5 per cent and avoid mortgage insurance, with the government guaranteeing a further 15 per cent to reach the industry standard of 20 per cent of the property purchase price. The ALP was quick to respond, saying they would introduce a similar scheme based on WA’s Keystart program. These policies are strongly supported by Master Builders.
East Perth redevelopment - 9 May 2019
News that the State Government is setting aside $30million for work on the East Perth Power Station in preparation for redevelopment has been welcomed by Master Builders. The site works will allow development plans to move forward and lead to more activity in the building sector.
Lunch with the Premier and Treasurer - 9 May 2019
Master Builders hosted Premier Mark McGowan and Treasurer Ben Wyatt on Friday for a boardroom lunch and discussion about Keystart, urban infill, the economy, building stimulus and major infrastructure projects such as Metronet, the WA Museum and Ocean Reef marina. It was a constructive discussion and we are adopting a solutions-based approach in our relationship with the State Government.
Budget boost for builders - 2 May 2019
The State Government has announced Budget support for builders this week after months of advocacy by Master Builders. Keystart income limits will rise by $15,000 for singles and couples and by $20,000 for families, opening the way for more West Australians to buy or build a home. This is great news for our industry because in 2017-18, Keystart approved a total of 2,789 loans and 2,169 were for new builds.
Inflation drops - 2 May 2019
In some economic news, Australia’s inflation rate declined to 1.3 per cent during the March 2019 quarter according to recent Australian Bureau of Statistics results. There is now an even greater likelihood that the Reserve Bank of Australia will cut its key interest rate over coming months given the absence of inflationary dangers and the need to boost economic growth.
HEAR FROM ONE OF AUSTRALIA'S MOST INFLUENTIAL WOMEN - 26 July 2019Book Here
Join us at this year’s Master Builders-Bankwest WinBaC Mid-Year Lunch at Crown Perth and hear from keynote speaker, Diane Smith-Gander AO.
MIDWEST AWARDS - ENTRIES CLOSE 26 JULY 2019Book Here
Entries are open for the 2019 Master Builders-Bankwest Building Excellence Awards for the Midwest region.
CEO and MANAGERS LUNCH - 9 August 2019Book Here
Hear from Steven Bradbury OAM at the 2019 Master Builders-Bankwest CEO and Managers Lunch on 9 August at crown Perth.
Diploma of Building and Construction - 1 August 2019Book Here
Looking to take the next step in your career? Enrol in the upcoming Perth intake for CPC50210 Diploma of Building and Construction (Building).
GET YOUR NOMINATIONS IN - 16 August 2019Book Here
Nominate a young high achiever in the industry for either the Ric New Medal for Excellence (35 years and under) or the Ric New Rising Star Award (up to 25 years).
Diploma of Building and Construction - 12 September 2019Book Here
Looking to take the next step in your career? Enrol in the upcoming Albany intake for CPC50210 Diploma of Building and Construction (Building).