NSW State Recap – Autumn 2021

The start of the new Autumn season has brought with it unexpected and major weather events. Torrential rain across Sydney and New South Wales have caused flooding that is infiltrating homes and businesses and uprooting communities.

With the severe weather events continuing at the time of writing, the clean-up is yet to begin, and we extend our thoughts and best wishes to all who are impacted.

The floods are a sobering reminder of the devastation that weather events can cause on our lives and their impact creates yet another challenge for New South Wales residents following more than a year of upheaval due to COVID-19.

It’s at this time that we rally together again and offer our support to one another to pull through to the other side, and we will. We are reminded there is some positive change ahead with the arrival of the COVID-19 vaccine on our shores.

The first roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccine comes at a time when the strata sector in New South Wales is preparing for significant legislative change as well.

Arguably the most significant achievement of SCA (NSW) in its 40-year history, the Professional Standards Scheme, expected to be enacted into legislation by 1 July 2021, marks a monumental advancement of the standards of strata as a profession.

Over the course of the first half of 2021, Strata Community Association (NSW) will be undertaking a massive lobbying effort and educational campaign to ensure all stakeholders have their say and this landmark piece of legislation comes into effect.

A Commitment to Community Safety

While you may think Australia’s mass vaccination means the beginning of the end of COVID-19, we are told the battleground has merely shifted. The stakes have changed and if one thing is certain, 2021 is going to be just as challenging as 2020.

As we take the edge off the severity of COVID, we will need to figure out what public health measures we will need in place to ensure that Strata remains healthy, connected, and informed as we head into another year with coronavirus as a household name.

SCA (NSW) will continue to advocate for and protect our communities as we did in 2020. It’s no secret that I’m proud of our team here, and truly believe that the role we all played in mitigating the spread of COVID-19 in high-density living was vital to our members and community.

Despite the huge challenges, Strata community living was not adversely affected by the spread and despite the proximity in which our members reside, we’ve gone above and beyond stymieing the ongoing threat.

So, I thank you and implore you to all continue upholding the highest hygiene standards as we continue further into the year.

Picking Up Where We Left Off

SCA (NSW) has hit the ground running in 2021, building upon some huge initiatives which we launched in 2020, engaging with Government further and building on our relationship with the Building Commissioner David Chandler OAM. There is a lot we still have in the pipeline, but for now, let’s unpack what we’ve managed in the first quarter of the year.


Last year, SCA (NSW) initiated the process of forming our own Professional Standards Scheme regulated by the Professional Standards Australia.

We are very pleased to announce that the Professional Standards Council (PSC) has endorsed our application and we have been given the approval to proceed to public notification.

The Professional Standards Council has invited comments and submissions in relation to the proposed Scheme from interested stakeholders by 31 March 2021. By the time this issue is published, the comments and submissions will be under review by the PSC.

We have made huge strides and we look forward to all the feedback submitted for the proposed scheme.

David Chandler OAM

David Chandler OAM was recently interviewed to deliver a sixmonth report card of what has been achieved, what has been completed and what is in the pipeline for consumers from him and the Office of the Building Commissioner (OBC).

In short, David Chandler OAM holds stock to the things his office has done, rather than what they have achieved – and there has been a huge load of work from the OBC in the last six months.

This was an excellent opportunity to understand Commissioner Chandler’s role to date and his commentary gives us great hope and pride about the future of the construction industry in New South Wales.

SCA (NSW) and the Office of the Building Commissioner continue to work closely on government projects to help foster and re-establish consumer confidence for the building/ construction industry in New South Wales.

Strata Hub

The NSW Government is developing a Strata Hub – a single access point to strata information for people who own, live in, or want to buy a strata property, and those who work in strata-related industries.

A Strata Hub will make it easier for people living in or intending to live in a strata scheme to access basic information about a particular building. For example, who the strata managing agent is (or who to contact in a self-managed strata scheme) or how environmentally friendly a building is.

At the time of writing, the Strata Hub is undergoing public consultation, which will be reviewed by the NSW Government.

Project Remediate Live

Project Remediate is a three-year program to help remove combustible cladding on an estimated 225 buildings known to the Cladding Taskforce across the state.

The NSW Government has: Confirmed it will pay for the interest on 10-year loans on behalf of apartment owners to fund and fast-track the removal of high-risk cladding on residential apartment buildings (Class 2). Created a Project Assurance Service, which will include a suite of measures to support high quality remediation outcomes, including appointment of a managing contractor to oversee each project. Established the Office of Project Remediate within the Office of the NSW Building Commissioner to establish and manage the program over the next three years.

The no-interest loans available under Project Remediate will be designed with the interests of building owners at the centre. Loans will be issued over a term of 10 years, with repayments commencing upon completion of the remediation work.

Owners corporations will be supported through the process of considering the loan offer, convening the required meetings and passing the necessary resolutions to enable them to enter into the loan agreement. Provisions to accommodate and protect owners who may experience financial hardship will be built into the loan design.

A Final Note!

Restrictions allowing, we will officially celebrate SCA (NSW)’s 40th which was postponed last year due to the coronavirus. We’re also anticipating the release of the book ‘From the Ground Up’ collated and written by John Coleman this year.

We turn our sights now combating the cold.

Stay healthy, stay warm, stay connected and stay safe.

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