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Sparkies welcome move to introduce Security of Payment Bill

Master Electricians has welcomed the announcement by the Queensland State Government that it will introduce legislation to guarantee the security of payments to small and medium businesses in the building and construction industry.

Minister for Housing and Public Works Mick de Brenni MP revealed this morning that he will introduce to parliament the Building Industry Fairness (Security of Payment) Bill 2017.

The proposed legislation includes a clampdown on “phoenixing” in the building and construction industry, and also introduces “project bank accounts” to safeguard subcontractors from being left out of pocket.

MEA Chief Executive Malcolm Richards said that the legislation was a giant step forward and was welcomed by MEA members throughout Queensland.

“MEA has been advocating to the Queensland Government for a long period of time to implement project bank accounts and we fully welcome the announcement by the Minister,” Mr Richards said.

“We have seen multiple examples of building companies going bust and in the process leaving many mum-and-dad sub-contracting businesses out in the cold.”

The security of payments reforms will put project bank accounts into place from January 1 2018 on all Government projects valued between $1 million and $10 million. The protections will then be expanded to all private sector projects worth in excess of $1 million from January 1 2019.

“Since the end of last year the Queensland building sector has had 30 insolvencies and around $100 million taken from the pockets of small subcontractors,” Mr Richards said.

“Project Bank Accounts will ensure that big builders can no longer use mum-and-dad sub-contracting businesses as a cash cow to finance their next major project.

“We ask that the Parliament passes this vital piece of legislation without delay in order to ensure that sub-contractors are paid in full, on time and every time.”

Malcolm Richards is available for interview. Please phone The SAS Group on 07 3221 9222.