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Building Act Botch-Up Will Cost Millions

Hon Nick Smith
National Party Building and Construction Spokesman

27 March 2005

Building Act botch-up will cost millions

National’s Building and Construction spokesman Nick Smith says Labour’s new Building Act is riddled with problems and will cost millions when it comes into effect on Friday.

“Dozens of public buildings from Auckland’s airport in the north to Southland hospital in the south will have to close on Friday if the Act is enforced.

“The closures will occur because the new Act prohibits public use of any part of a building until a code of compliance certificate is issued. Interim code compliance certificates become redundant on Friday.

“This provision is nuts. Major building projects have always been done in stages and done quite safely. This error will cost the building industry millions as councils and builders try to find a way around this bad law.

“Transit New Zealand last week withdrew their single building consent for the State Highway 20 extension in Auckland and has re-lodged it as 39 separate building consents. The Kenepuru Hospital building in Wellington has had to do the same, adding millions to the cost and months in delays.

“The ink is not yet dry on this new Act yet the Department of Building and Housing is recommending that these provisions be rewritten.

“This is the second major problem identified in the new Act since it was found to breach copyright laws over building codes.

“It is no wonder Labour has botched the building laws and the leaky home scandal when it has had eight Ministers in five years.

“This is just not good enough for a sector worth $18 billion a year to the New Zealand economy,” says Dr Smith.

Ends

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