5 March / Update

March 2019 / Building Code Compliance

Over the last two years, Hutchies has been subject to over 130 site visits, inspections and audits by ABCC inspectors. In each instance, we are confident that Hutchies’ Site Management Teams have demonstrated Hutchies’ compliance with the Building Code applying to each project.

Whilst evidence of compliance is encouraging, there is no sign that the volume of inspections and the focus on Hutchies’ projects is reducing. It is therefore essential that Hutchies’ teams remain vigilant in the area of Building Code compliance and that you contact Ben Young on 0400 577 953 if there is any aspect of the Code that requires clarification. Two particularly useful resources to refresh your understanding of the Code are Hutchies’ Site Management Industrial Relations Guides and the Building Code Self Audit.

Status of Hutchies' Code Compliance

Building Code 2016 requires that any builder or subcontractor who wishes to tender for Government projects is not covered by an Enterprise Agreement that contains certain non-permitted clauses.

Hutchies currently has Code 2016 compliant agreements in Tasmania, Victoria and New South Wales. The process to have a Code 2016 compliant agreement registered in Queensland / Northern Territory is well under way, however, as it is not yet complete we are currently not permitted to submit expressions of interest or tender for federally funded projects nationally. If you are considering a project which may have federal funding attached to it, please contact Ben Young to discuss.

Right of Entry

Building Code 2016 requires that builders covered by the Code only allow Union Officials access to site in accordance with the Fair Work Act or Workplace Health and Safety legislation, however, in Queensland and Northern Territory, Hutchies’ current Enterprise Agreement includes a ‘Standing Invitation’ clause (cl 32.4) which means that until Hutchies’ Queensland / Northern Territory Agreement is varied to be Code 2016 compliant CFMEU Officials (including those without permits) are able to visit any project in Queensland and Northern Territory to meet with a member of the Hutchies’ Team.

Teams with projects in other States should follow the guidelines in the applicable Hutchies’ Site Management Industrial Relations Guide. If you are unsure of how to manage Right of Entry on your project, or if you are faced with a circumstance where there may be a breach of Right of Entry requirements, please contact Ben Young on 0400 577 953.

Paraphernalia

An area of the Code that has become a focus for the ABCC is the issue of paraphernalia.

Hutchies’ position with respect to paraphernalia is very clear. Site Managers are to ensure that no paraphernalia on the project implies that membership of a Union is anything other than a personal choice. An example of a non-permitted sign is one that reads: ‘No Ticket – No Start’. The Hutchies’ Site Management Industrial Relations Guides outline a procedure for removing posters that breach the Building Code and everyone is encouraged to re-familiarise themselves with that procedure.

To ensure paraphernalia does not breach freedom of association, Hutchies’ policy on sites where Union paraphernalia is present is to provide a balanced approach with Hutchies posters and flags around the project placed in alongside union paraphernalia. Each site must monitor the volume and type of paraphernalia on Hutchies’ projects by conducting twice daily inspections. If you require additional Hutchies’ posters or flags, please contact Sammy Fisher. Note: when rationalising the volume and type of Union paraphernalia on site, please be sensible regarding how the materials are dealt with. The sensible and respectful thing to do would be to remove those posters that are inappropriate and could be classified as breaches of the Building Code, and retain in your office and provide them back to the Delegate at the earliest opportunity. The Delegate will understand that Hutchies must comply with the requirements of the Building Code and the volume and / or type of posters displayed were not in accordance with those requirements.

Inductions

Ensure the Building Code and specifically Freedom of Association is covered in the induction using the standardised script which can be found on the Document Library

Ensure Delegates do not carry out inductions

Ensure all induction records are secured in a lockable cabinet immediately following the induction Ensure Hutchies’ Freedom of Association poster is displayed in the induction room. The poster is available on the Document Library

Training

If you or your team feel they need specific training on any aspect of the Building Code, please contact Ben Young to make the necessary arrangements.

Other points of note

Subcontract agreements

Remember to always use the updated subcontract agreements from Hutchies’ Document Library.

Non-citizens

The Code has specific requirements for builders or subbies wishing to engage non Australian citizens – if you are considering a new recruit that is not an Australian citizen and on any kind of visa, please contact Ben Young to discuss.

Delegates

Projects with Delegates are reminded that the Code requires Delegates to have a role outside of their delegate responsibilities – please contact Ben Young if you need to discuss.

Security of Payments 

Earlier this year we ran training nationally with respect to Hutchies’ obligation to report disputed or delayed payments to the ABCC. It is essential that everyone is processing claims and invoices regularly to ensure all payments are either paid by the due date or dealt with strictly in accordance with Security of Payments laws.  

Reporting of Stop work events

Hutchies has a requirement to report any industrial action on our projects. That is any stoppage that is not authorised or related to a legitimate concern for Health and Safety. If you have works stop on your project, please call Ben Young on 0400 577 953 on the day of the stoppage to discuss whether the stoppage is classified as industrial action. It is standard Hutchies’ practice to speak with Ben Young prior to submitting a report.

Sham Contracting

It is a breach of the Building Code and the Fair Work Act to engage in ‘Sham Contracting’.

A sham contracting arrangement is when an employer attempts to disguise an employment relationship as an independent contracting arrangement.

The ABCC website provides some guidance with respect to whether a worker is classified employee or an independent contractor. https://www.abcc.gov.au/resources/fact-sheets/independent-contractors/how-determine-if-worker-employee-or-independent-contractor Teams must be taking all reasonable steps to ensure subbies are not engaging in Sham Contracting arrangements on our projects.

ABCC Inspections 

Hutchies continues to receive around two unannounced inspections / site visits per week from ABCC inspectors. During these visits inspectors typically request various documents for inspection and often ask for copies of these documents. Under Section 74 of the Building and Construction Industry (Improving Productivity) Act 2016, ABCC Investigators have authority to enter Hutchies’ sites and to inspect and make copies of documents while on site. In order for us to keep a record of the exchange of documents please make a second copy of any documents provided to inspectors and send them to the Code Compliance Team along with a summary of what was discussed during the visit. In instances where Hutchies’ people are being asked to provide a statement, please contact Ben Young so that appropriate arrangements can be made to have a support person present.

Other Recent Activities

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7 July / Observation

Sunday 7 July through to Saturday 13 July 2019

NAIDOC Week is about celebrating Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and achievements and you will see lots of different events and ceremonies around your communities around this.

Some of our offices particularly Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne have had small celebrations to mark the occasion. 

The annual NAIDOC Awards were on last weekend and we’d like to acknowledge the brother of our own Glen Duncan (Indigenous Coordinator – Sydney), Dean Duncan who won the 2019 NAIDOC Person of the Year for the tireless work he does in education (see more here https://www.naidoc.org.au/awards/winner-profiles). Congratulations to the Duncan Family from all of us at Hutchies.

This year’s theme is titled Voice, Treaty, Truth, which were the three elements to come out of the Uluru Statement. Those elements translate to:

  • Voice – we want to be heard; we want be involved in decisions that affect us.
  • Treaty – we are one of the only democracies in the world that do not have a treaty or formal acknowledgement with its Indigenous people.
  • Truthour story of how Australia was colonised must be told; we have a very dark history and it’s time for it to be shared and for all us to own it.

If you want to know more please visit https://www.naidoc.org.au/get-involved/2019-theme or ask anyone from the Hutchies’ Training team.

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10 July / General

Hutchies now has its very own Trademutt high vis shirts for employees! 

Trademutt is a social enterprise workwear brand by tradies for tradies. Its goal is to tackle mens’ suicide in Australia head on, and in doing so, make Aussie tradies look great, feel great and be part of a movement that will change the face of mens’ mental health forever.

Hutchies worked closely with Trademutt to design our very own special edition shirt. It's for anyone at Hutchies to wear, whether it's on site, in the office or at the monthly Friday BBQ.

These special shirts are free of charge and won't count towards your annual allocation because we want as many out there as possible. Head to the Hutchies' Shop or click the links below to get one now!

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15 July / Meetings

Monday 15 July 2019

Please participate in Monday’s meetings if possible.

8.00am / Site Managers / Foremen / Leading Hands / Apprentices

Held in Toowong training room and video conference from offices via Surface Hubs and Polycoms.

3.00pm / All Project Managers and Contract Administrators

Regions to join via video conference in each office, individuals out of the various offices to join by the usual teleconference facilities (details can be downloaded below). All Hutchies’ project related people from office or site are encouraged to participate.

5.00pm Dumplings and a beer / Brisbane only

It would be great if all could participate.

Remember to mute your line by entering *6 - to unmute, enter #6

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5 July / Public Holiday

Friday 5 July 2019 (Darwin only)

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26 June / Quality

You may already be aware that the QBCC is regularly checking company and Workers’ licences on site against the work that is being performed.

It’s important that you personally understand what is required on your site, especially if you are in a site supervisory role.

Please familiarise yourself with the below resources.

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28 June / Observation

Annually, 3,200 Australian families experience the sudden and unexpected death of a baby or child. This has to stop. Through world-class research, advocacy and education we passionately believe we can put an end to this.

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1 July / Public Holiday

Monday 1 July 2019 (Townsville only)

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21 June / General

If your or someone you know – female or male – stands out as an individual that is great at their job or does a lot to support and empower women in construction, please nominate them now! Internal nominations close 21 June– get in quick!

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14 June / Public Holiday

Friday 14 June 2019 (Sunshine Coast only)

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