Victorian Policy & Advocacy Update

The latest Victorian advocacy and policy updating including the latest COVID-19 restrictions update.

COVID-19 ESSENTIALS

The Victorian Industry Coordination Centre has today (25 October) circulated advice to the Institute and other industry bodies in the construction sector as follows:

“Given high vaccination rates and low levels of interaction with the public, the following requirements no longer apply to the construction sector: 

  • baseline daily workforce limits
    • travel restrictions between metropolitan Melbourne and Regional Victoria
    • attestation requirements
    • crib room requirements (compliance with best practice standards is recommended).

Of particular note is that Construction site operators are no longer required to send attestation information to Services Victoria about workers’ vaccination status. However, as set out in COVID-19 Mandatory Vaccination (Specified Facilities) Directions (No 10) effective 21 October to 18 November, construction site operators must still collect, record and hold vaccination information and take reasonable steps to prevent entry of unvaccinated workers. If  an operator does not hold vaccination information about a worker, the operator must treat the worker as if the worker is unvaccinated.

Workers at all construction sites will need to adhere to the schedule in the COVID-19 Mandatory Vaccination (Specified Facilities) Directions, requiring them to have had their first vaccination dose by Friday 22 October and a second vaccination dose by Saturday 13 November.

Other COVIDSafe requirements also continue to apply as set out in the advisory email:

  • Vaccination– . 
  • Face masks– Face masks must be worn indoors and outdoors by anyone aged 12 years and over, whenever you leave your home, unless you have a lawful reason not to.  
  • COVIDSafe Plan– you must ensure your COVIDSafe Plan is up to date. 
  • Limit of movement of workers between sites until Phase C of Victoria’s Roadmap is reached, worker movement between multiple construction sites will be limited.  This applies except in relation to:
    • supervisors on small-scale construction sites, who can move between multiple small-scale construction sites; or
    • specialist contractors who can move between up to three construction sites per week; or
    • specialists who provide safety services; or
    • those required to meet minimum statutory obligations or requirements (for example, auditors, building inspectors or surveyors);
  • worker bubbles so that workers work consistently with the same group of other construction workers where reasonably practicable including working in separate shifts and taking separate breaks.
  • Density quotient– your workplace must observe a density quotient of one person per four square metres in shared or publicly accessible spaces. 
  • Record keeping– employers must keep records to show compliance with the Directions including work premises rosters, time and attendance records and payroll data. You must use the Victorian Government QR Code Service to check-in workers. 
  • Surveillance testing– construction sites with more than 400 workers must participate in surveillance testing, in accordance with the Surveillance Testing Industry List. 
  • Signage – you must display signage at each public entry to indoor and outdoor spaces. This must show the capacity and face mask requirements. You must also display Service Victoria QR Codesat every public entrance. Visit Signs, Posters and Templates for your workplace.  

FUTURE MELBOURNE – PLANNING FRAMEWORK FOR LAND USE PLANNING FRAMEWORKS

The Future Melbourne Planning Framework consultation recently run by the Department of Environment Land Water and Planning seeks feedback on Land Use Planning Frameworks (LUPF) for each of six Melbourne metropolitan regions. The Institute has responded by submission. We have elected to respond at a high level about the LUPFs generally rather than make comment on specific elements of one or more individual region LUPFs and have drawn attention to wider issues to strengthen all LUPFs. These are:

  • Sustainability
  • Designing in Country
  • Design Review Panels
  • Procurement for Building Quality

A copy of the submission can be downloaded from: Submission n Melbourne’s Future Planning Framework Land Use Framework Plans | Oct 2021