Media Release by The Hon Tanya Pibersek MP

NSW Government recruits small army of builders

Joint Media Release with:

  • The Hon Nathan Rees, NSW Premier

Premier Nathan Rees today announced that 190 new building firms have been recruited to help build around 9500 new social housing homes over the next three years.

Mr Rees said that the NSW Government is working in partnership with the Commonwealth Government to deliver on this massive investment as part of the Nation Building Economic Stimulus Plan.

“Over the next three years a combined investment of $3 billion by the Commonwealth and NSW Governments will deliver around 9500 social housing homes in NSW,” Mr Rees said.

“In this tough economic climate, supporting jobs is the number one priority for all levels of Government across the country.

“Because of the scale of this program we need a small army of builders, architects, carpenters, brickies, plumbers, surveyors, engineers and landscapers to help us build these homes.

“We need to move quickly – 75 per cent of the properties that the Commonwealth is funding as part of their Nation Building Economic Stimulus Plan need to be ready for tenants to move in by Dec 2010.

“That’s why we opened up Housing NSW’s Builders’ Register which is used to streamline and simplify the appointment of builders for our projects.

“We have expanded our Register from 51 building firms to a massive 241 after receiving a staggering amount of applications from building firms keen to be involved in the avalanche of new home construction.”

Federal ¬†Tanya Plibersek said the social housing component of the Rudd Government’s Nation Building Economic Stimulus Plan is all about supporting jobs in the construction sector.

“Nearly 70 percent of the Nation Building Economic Stimulus Plan is infrastructure and when the stimulus package gets up to full steam, there will be around 35,000 individual construction projects around the country,” Ms Plibersek said.

“It’s not just about jobs for builders, tradespeople and their apprentices but also associated industries such as building manufacturers and suppliers who help keep the Australian economy ticking over.

“In addition, there is the important social benefit of providing more affordable housing to people who need it the most.”

Mr Rees said the Builders’ Register is a list of pre-approved building firms that can be approached to tender for building work.

“This approach is smart, sensible, saves time and most importantly, it guarantees value-for-money for the taxpayers of NSW,” Mr Rees said.

“The Register is broken into regions with building firms allocated to one or more region. Each firm has been carefully assessed and allocated price ranges within which they can tender for work.

“Having a panel of tried and tested firms with the ability to deliver cuts down the assessment process and also gives us the added confidence of knowing our building work is in safe hands.

“Expanding our register gives the construction industry added opportunities for work over the next few years and provides security for jobs.

“It’s also a great opportunity for them to be part of a project that will give 17,000 disadvantaged Australians a new home – a once in a lifetime opportunity to be part of a project that secures jobs and investment in NSW and provides new homes for people doing it tough.”

Ray Zeaiter from Razor Constructions Pty Ltd, one of the companies on the register, said it means a lot to his company and staff.

“I can employ up to 50 subcontractors ranging from brickies, to carpenters, electricians, painters and plumbers” Mr Zeaiter said.

“We all have families and if they have work they have money to shop and spend on goods and it all flows on to other businesses.”