From the Acting CEO

Clare Cousins


13 Aug 2018

Submission to the Banking Royal Commission
The Institute, in collaboration with ArchiTeam and the ACA, are finalising an extensive submission to the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry outlining concerns of the profession regarding lending conditions imposed by banks for domestic building work.

Thank you to the many members who shared their experiences in our Banking Survey in June, your responses provided valuable feedback for our submission.

These unfair bank lending practices not only negatively impact architects, particularly our sole-practitioners, but add undue restrictions on consumers resulting in additional legal and certification costs, uncertainty and time delays.

For architects we are particularly concerned that the actions of the banks and bank policies are unfairly constraining the professional engagement of architects; result in architects incurring an added risk for partial services during construction; are excluding architects from engaging in and receiving professional fees for a service for which they are qualified and trained; and putting architects at a competitive disadvantage compared to other building practitioners. We look forward to sharing a copy of the submission once it has been finalised.
Advocacy with impact
Ahead of the Building Ministers’ Forum last Friday, the Institute continued its advocacy efforts calling for the ministers to adopt the recommendations of the Shergold-Weir report in the interest of public safety and to improve the energy efficiency requirements of the National Construction Code.

Acting National President Richard Kirk spoke with The Australian (paywall) highlighting the urgency of enacting these changes with the NCC. The Institute’s National Policy Manager Leanne Hardwicke represented the profession at the Industry Forum with Ministers in Adelaide prior to the closed-door BMF. In their post meeting communique, the BMF have directed the development of a paper that sets out an implementation plan for reform, incorporating feedback from industry stakeholders. This paper will be tabled at their next forum. The Institute will continue to push for the recommendations to be implemented as a matter of urgency.

You can read more about the Institute’s response to the Shergold-Weir report and its recommendations here.
Gold Medal Tour
Our 2018 Gold Medallist, Alec Tzannes begins his Gold Medal Tour this Thursday starting off in Darwin. Make sure you check the dates for your Chapter and hear from one of the country’s most significant architects about what inspires him and drives his passion for design.

Clare Cousins
Acting Chief Executive Officer