As part of the BDAV CPD Seminar on 1 April, the VBA gave a brief overview of the status of the Building Activity Management System (BAMS). The following is provided to those who were unable to attend.
Building permit number and levy changes from 1 July 2019
In 2016, the Victorian Government commenced a three-year building industry reforms program. As part of this program, amendments to the Building Act 1993 will commence on 1 July 2019 through the Building Amendment (Enforcement and Other Measures) Act 2017.
These amendments will address:
difficulties in determining whether all building permit levy due has been remitted to the Victorian Building Authority (VBA)
concerns that some building surveyors are retaining the building permit levy for working capital, contributing to shortfalls in total levy received by the VBA; and
delays in the provision of information required by the regulator due to the current monthly reporting system used by building surveyors.
On 1 July 2019, the way in which the building permit levy is paid to the VBA will change, reducing some of the regulatory burden on building surveyors.
Building surveyors will also be required to obtain a building permit number from the VBA before issuing a building permit. It is important to note that building surveyors will be required to provide the VBA with certain information when applying for a building permit number, as well as monthly reports and information relating to prescribed events.
Implementation of the Building Activity Management System (BAMS)
To assist in the implementation of some of these reforms, the VBA is developing an online system – known as the Building Activity Management System, or BAMS – to issue building permit numbers and receive payment of the building permit levy.
The VBA has engaged with representatives from industry, the Victorian Managed Insurance Authority, building surveyor software vendors and selected municipal and private building surveyors to understand system requirements and inform the development of BAMS. These groups have provided valuable input into the design of BAMS.
The new BAMS process
The relevant building surveyor must apply to the VBA through BAMS for a building permit number for a proposed building permit. They must provide:
all information required by the VBA for a building permit number application;
the cost of the proposed building work estimated; and
an estimate of the amount of building permit levy payable.
The applicant for a building permit, or person acting on their behalf, must pay the VBA the amount of building permit levy calculated before a building permit is issued. BAMS can send an email to the nominated person directing them to make payment through a secure payment gateway.
A building permit number will only be issued by the VBA (via BAMS) to the relevant building surveyor after the levy payment has been received by the VBA from the nominated payer. The VBA will issue (or refuse to issue) a building permit number within five business days.
The VBA will notify the relevant council of the building permit number and the information supplied to the VBA by the relevant building surveyor in relation to the application for the building permit number.
The relevant building surveyor must notify the VBA of prescribed events that relate to a building permit via the BAMS portal.
The BDAV will keep members up to date on progress of BAMS as it is updated.