On Wednesday 28 May, The Hon Jacinta Allen, Minister for Transport Infrastructure, for Priority Precincts and for the Coordination of Transport: COVID-19, joined Master Builders Victoria members for a Zoom discussion that helped to take a broad inventory of the ways in which the Victorian Government had taken action on behalf of our industry and the communities we serve.

The items included within Minister Allan’s discussion not only reminded us of how much has happened in the last few months (communicated on a daily basis through this bulletin), but also of the crucial element that the State Government has consistently supported building and construction as an essential industry, thereby allowing us to continue work when so many other industries have not.

Among actions the State Government has taken are:

  • the establishment in April of the Crisis Council of Cabinet: overseeing all matters COVID-19 as they relate to the state’s portfolio of services to address the crisis. This council remains in service until 30 September this year, at which time it will be considered for a longer tenure.
  • the establishment of the Building Victoria’s Recovery Taskforce (BVRT), on whose steering committee Master Builders Victoria sits: overseeing the fast-tracking of planning approvals within ministerial powers, identifying financial incentives and reviewing current revenue opportunities to help businesses survive and recover from the major disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Recently, the taskforce revealed that on their recommendation Minister for Planning Richard Wynne had approved a range of shovel-ready projects in and around the Melbourne CBD worth $1.2 billion, following on from the $2.7 billion Building Works Package announced by Minster Allan the week prior.  The taskforce will continue to make recommendations for fast-tracking projects.

Master Builders Victoria CEO Rebecca Casson has stated the BVRT, “rightly places building and construction at the centre of economic recovery for our state.”

As part of our appeal effort, we also asked the State Government to ensure projects were available in smaller tenders so these can be accessible by smaller businesses, such as mum-and-dad builders and tradies. This package includes hundreds of projects that have been selected precisely because they can launch quickly, within weeks or months.

We encourage all members to read our regular special bulletins for content pertinent to pandemic restrictions and support opportunities for our industry. For assistance, please call Master Builders Victoria on (03) 9411 4555 or email assist@mbav.com.au