Electricians support measures to secure payment for subbies

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13 January 2017

Master Electricians Australia has today offered in principle support to any measures that help secure payment for work done by sub-contractors.

Earlier today, the Queensland State Government announced that they will restructure the Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC), following the collapse of the Cullen Group in December, which has resulted in subbies being owed an estimated $18 million.

MEA Manager of Advisory Services Jason O’Dwyer said that it was pleasing to see the Queensland government seeking to address the issue.

“It is not uncommon for the principal contractor of a job site to go bust and in the process leave the subbies who have performed the work out in the lurch,” Mr O’Dwyer said.

“There is nothing more soul destroying for an electrical sub-contractor than to complete work in a timely and professional manner, only to wait months on end for payment or in some cases to not be paid at all. 

“Not only can this be costly to a small business, but the anxiety and stress it can place on a subcontractor, particularly if they are supporting a family, can be devastating.

“The collapse of the Cullen Group was just the latest in a long line of companies that have gone bust while still owing millions of dollars to sub-contractors and MEA believes that this simply cannot continue.

“Any restructuring of the QBCC by the state government needs to ensure that regulatory powers are in place to prevent a repeat of what’s happened with the Cullen Group in the future.”

Last December the State Government announced that it will look to legislate a security of payments system to guarantee payment to subcontractors, should a principal contractor collapse.

“MEA supports in principle measures that aim to address the issue of subbies not being paid in full and on time.”

“However, it is important that any legislation passed by the state parliament effectively deals with the issue and doesn’t allow any cases to fall through the cracks.

“MEA looks forward to working with politicians on all sides of politics to ensure common sense legislation is implemented that safeguards subbies from being left out in the cold.” 

Jason O’Dwyer is available for interview. Please phone SAS Group on 07 3221 9222.

 

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