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My Freedom of Information request to DELWP regarding registration of builders

My FOI request to DEWLP dated 10 November 2016.

The VBA have advised me that the VBA does not have a threshold of a delay in completing a building that results in deregistration of the builder. This effectively means that in the eyes of Government, a builder can take forever to build. This has given shelter to innumerable builders to harass and make the lives of vast numbers of citizens of Victoria unliveable.

I now seek a copy of:

A) any official advice received by DELWP (either upon request or suo moto) from the VBA or CAV in relation to (1) the habitual practice of registered builders not completing domestic buildings in time, and (2) any suggestions received by DELWP from these entities in relation to options to address this systemic shortcoming, such as (but not limited to) through making it a requirement for renewal of the registration of a builder by the VBA, for the VBA to require proof of satisfactory and timely completion from all customers of buildings that were due for completion during the year before the date of registration renewal.

B) summary of any research in this regard (i.e. specifically related to the nature and extent of this chronic problem of incessant delay by builders and use or lack thereof of the renewal system of registration to identify such delinquent builders, and any options identified in this regard) undertaken by the DELWP to potentially inform the forthcoming new Building Regulations 2017 which allow the Minister, under s. 172AA of the Building Act,to prescribe such requirements.

A nil response would indicate to me a policy failure of VBA, CAV and DELWP that has led to citizens being severely misled through the bogus – registration – certificates of builders – who are persons who are not require to build, or even expected to build before registration is renewed.

HERE IS THE RESPONSE I RECEIVED (linked with this post of mine)

Ref: FI103/4237

Dear Mr Sabhlok

Freedom of information Act 1982 – Notice of Decision

I refer to your request under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (F01 Act), dated and received 10 November 2016, seeking access to:

“A) any official advice received by DELWP (either upon request or suo moto) from the VBA or CAV in relation to (1) the habitual practice of registered builders not completing domestic buildings in time, and (2) any suggestions received by DELWP from these entities in relation to options to address this systemic shortcoming, such as (but not limited to) through making it a requirement for renewal of the registration of a builder by the VBA, for the VBA to require proof of satisfactory and timely completion from all customers of buildings that were due for completion during the year before the date of registration renewal. B) summary of any research in this regard (i.e. specifically related to the nature and extent of this chronic problem of incessant delay by builders and use or lack thereof of the renewal system of registration to identify such delinquent builders, and any options identified in this regard) undertaken by the DELWP to potentially inform the forthcoming new Building Regulations 2017 which allow the Minister, under s. 172AA of the Building Act, to prescribe such requirements…”

I am an officer authorised under section 26 of the FOI Act to make decisions in relation to FOI requests.

Document Searches
After a thorough and diligent search conducted by the department’s Planning, Building & Heritage division, no documents relevant to your request were located.

Privacy Statement
Any personal information about you or a third party in your correspondence will be protected under the provisions
of the Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014. It will only be used or disclosed to appropriate Ministerial, Statutory Authority. or departmental staff in regard to the purpose for which it was provided, unless required or authorised by law. IThquiries about access to information about you held by the Department should be directed to the Privacy Coordinator,

If you are not satisfied with my decision that no documents exist you have the right to complain to the Freedom of Information Commissioner by writing to:
Office of the Freedom of Information Commissioner PO Box 24274
MELBOURNE VIC 3001

Email: enquiriesfoicommissionervic.gov.au

You have 60 days from the date you receive this letter to submit your complaint. If you wish to discuss this matter further, please contact me on XXX

Yours sincerely
Freedom of Information Officer

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