Norman Waterhouse

 

 

Normans Briefly

In this issue

Welcome to the February edition of our Local Government Briefly.

>   Walking the Talk - Industrial Relations in the Real World
>   Employment – Contracts, policies, and the importance of avoiding self-inflicted claims
>   Development Assessment – “Minor variations” now official
>   Corporate & Commercial – AS 11000 General Conditions of Contract - A new era for Standards Australia
>   Building Upgrade Agreements – An update
>   Local Government – Do you need a ‘privacy’ policy?
>   Regulatory – Increased expiation reminder and enforcement warning fees for all offences, and increased expiation fees for parking offences
>   Development Control – Update on Aleppo pines

Walking the Talk - Industrial Relations in the Real World

Following our highly successful industrial relations conference in 2014, the Norman Waterhouse Employment and Industrial Relations Team invites you to join them again for a full day of in-depth and interactive analysis of workplace issues on the 10th of April 2015.

Please click here to view the program and register.


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Employment – Contracts, policies, and the importance of avoiding self-inflicted claims

An employment contract is a legally binding agreement between an employer and employee. The failure to abide by an employment contract has legal consequences under contract law. 

On the other hand, policies and procedures are sets of rules which regulate workplaces by setting behavioural and other standards and expectations. Unlike an employment contract, employment policies and procedures are generally not contractually binding, and breach of such policy or procedure does not have direct legal consequences.

Click here to read more.



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Development Assessment – “Minor variations” now official

I have often been heard to remark – with varying degrees of exasperation – “There’s no such thing as a minor variation.” But now there is.

Background

Since the inception of the Development Act 1993 (and probably well before), planning authorities, building authorities, and land division authorities have – from time to time –accepted amended plans after approval or consent has been granted and have treated the change to the approved plans as a “minor variation”.

Click here to read more.



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Corporate & Commercial – AS 11000 General Conditions of Contract - A new era for Standards Australia

In this article, the first in a two part series, I will consider the new draft General Conditions of Contract, AS 11000 issued by Standards Australia. The new standard is proposed to replace AS 2124 - 1992 and AS 4000 - 1997, both of which are widely used throughout the construction industry. Standards Australia has indicated that the current suites of contracts based on AS 2124 and AS 4000 will be discontinued, so it is clear that AS 11000 will become the industry norm. The publication of the draft represents a significant change for the construction industry and local government will need to give some thought to the proposed changes. Standards Australia is inviting public comment on the draft by Friday 27 March 2015. 

Click here to read more.



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Building Upgrade Agreements – An update

We have discussed the issue of building upgrade agreements in a previous briefly on this topic. Now the Local Government (Building Upgrade Agreements) Amendment Bill 2015 (the Bill) was introduced to Parliament on 11 February 2015. If enacted, the Bill will introduce building upgrade finance for (initially) commercial and industrial buildings in South Australia based on models currently in place in Victoria and New South Wales. 

Building upgrade finance would allow owners to obtain loans to upgrade the energy, water and environmental efficiency of their buildings. A loan would then be tied to the land, with repayments being made to the relevant council via a charge on the land. The council would then pass on the repayments to the financier.

Click here to read more.



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Local Government – Do you need a ‘privacy’ policy?

The protection of personal information is an issue which continually takes on increasing social, emotional and legal significance. Information technology advances continue at a rapid rate, as does the shifting of many facets of our lives into the digital realm. The body of law which deals with the collection, storage and use of personal information is known as ‘privacy law’, and extends into both the private and public sectors.

What privacy laws apply to councils?

Perhaps surprisingly, Local Government in South Australia is not bound by any overarching framework of laws or standards regarding privacy.

Click here to read more.



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Regulatory – Increased expiation reminder and enforcement warning fees for all offences, and increased expiation fees for parking offences

On 22 January 2015, expiation fees for numerous parking and stopping offences increased.

New expiation fees for offences against Part 12 of the Australian Road Rules (Restrictions on Stopping and Parking) are set out in Schedule 4, Part 3 of the Road Traffic (Miscellaneous) Regulations 2014 (SA).

Click here to read more.



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Development Control – Update on Aleppo pines

In our October 2014 Briefly article we updated you about a change made on 31 July 2014 to the Minister’s “pest species” declaration under the Natural Resources Management Act 2004.

The effect of the July 2014 change was that Aleppo pine trees (Pinus halepensis) would never be ‘regulated’ or ‘significant’ trees under the Development Act 1993 (Act) unless specifically designated as a significant tree by a council. A recent further amendment to the Minister’s declaration means this is no longer the case.

Click here to read more.



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