Residential Settlements

Settlement agents’ board gets the axe

Streamlined advisory framework announced

This just in from The Australian Institute of Conveyancers.

Commerce Minister Troy Buswell today announced fewer licensing and advisory boards would govern the property industry as part of a broader move to slash red tape.
A smaller committee of industry and consumer representatives would be formed so that the property industry had a more streamlined process for input to Government.

“I would like to sincerely thank the members of all of the old boards for their significant contribution in time and effort,” Mr Buswell said.

“Reducing the number of Consumer Protection boards will reduce costs but more importantly, it will also cut duplication which will be better for all stakeholders.

“When a single regulator is responsible and accountable for dealing with issues there is also less red tape and issues are less likely to fall through the cracks.”

Legislation to implement these reforms is likely to be introduced into State Parliament by the end of 2010.

Under the new regime, licensing and regulatory functions would be managed by the Commissioner of Consumer Protection and employing authority and financial responsibility would be handled by the Director General of the Department of Commerce.

The changes would position the local property industry for the national harmonisation of licensing, standards and regulatory arrangements of property agents under the National Occupational Licensing system which is expected to begin on July 1, 2012.

The latest reform follows State Government announcements to abolish the Hairdressers Registration Board and consolidate the Builders Registration Board; Painters Registration Board; Plumbers Licensing Board; and the Building Industry Development directorate into the Building Commission.

Premier Colin Barnett announced in March 2009 the State Government’s intention to reduce the number of existing boards and committees.

What do you think? Will these changes provide better consumer protection? Will it help or harm the industry?