$600 million package to fix buildings with combustible cladding announced

The Victorian Government has today announced a $600 million package to fix privately owned buildings with combustible cladding across the state.

The grants will fund rectification works on hundreds of buildings, found to have high-risk cladding, to make sure they’re safe and compliant with all building regulations.

The program will be overseen by a new agency, Cladding Safety Victoria, which will manage funding and work with owners corporations from start to finish.

The State Government will directly fund half of the rectification works and will introduce changes to the building permit levy to raise the other $300 million over the next five years. This announcement comes off the back of recommendations made in the final report from the Victorian Cladding Taskforce, released today.

What does this mean for owners of affected properties?

Rectification of combustible cladding on buildings is complex and difficult – different solutions will be required for different buildings. There are many buildings requiring rectification and they come in many different shapes and sizes. Cladding may need to be removed to ensure safety in many but not all affected buildings. Rectification is a process that will take time, in large part due to the size and number of affected buildings and the nature of the building works to be carried out.

The Taskforce has worked with the Victorian Building Authority (VBA) to identify 15 buildings that will have their cladding fixed first. Work on these high-risk buildings will begin in the coming weeks.

How will I know if I am impacted?

The VBA has been engaged by the State Government to lead a Statewide Cladding Audit, assessing which privately owned apartment buildings are at risk. This audit is ongoing.

If the apartment building where you live or own is inspected as part of the project, you will receive a letter from the VBA. Building managers, building owners or owners’ corporations will also be contacted by the VBA prior to an inspection taking place. The results of these audits will be communicated to relevant parties, by the VBA, when available.

To be eligible for assistance from Cladding Safety Victoria, your property must first have been assessed as part of this audit.

Cladding Safety Victoria will be contacting owners corporations and property owners shortly, starting with those whose buildings are at the greatest risk.

Where can I learn more?

Further information regarding this announcement and the role of Cladding Safety Victoria can be found here.

The Hopkins Group is committed to keeping our clients informed of any updates/changes that may be relevant to them. We are interested to see how this initiative is executed over time and hope that it provides welcome support to those who may be at risk.

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