The Building and Construction Authority (BCA) will introduce the ‘Community Wellbeing Scheme’, which entails new obligations for construction site developers. The general public is invited to participate in the public consultation process.
The Minister for the Environment, Climate Change and Planning, Hon. Aaron Farrugia, announced that an amendment to the published Regulations L.N. 136 of 2019 will be circulated for public consultation. The scope of this amendment is to make it mandatory for developers to pay for professional fees incurred by Third Parties regarding contestation of any method statement or condition report submitted to the Competent Authority.
Hon. Farrugia explained that the new regulations will also refund any expenses incurred by Third Parties for professional fees, up to a maximum amount of five hundred Euro (€500.00) excluding Value Added Tax (VAT).
The scheme states that developers will soon have to start paying for neighbours’ architects to review condition reports and method statements. These architects would be chosen by the owner of the neighbouring property and will be tasked with reviewing the works should there be a disagreement between the parties involved.
“We are not looking to provide shocks to the industry. But we need to ensure that families feel safe in their homes and that the sector remains strong and sustainable, even by implementing all possible measures to ensure development does not negatively impact the community. We are working towards striking a balance between the needs of an industry which is so important for our economy and the wellbeing of our society,” Minister Farrugia said.
Parliamentary Secretary, Hon. Chris Agius, said that “through this scheme we are continuing to work to ensure that within such an important industry for our country’s economy, citizens continue to enjoy peace of mind while construction work is ongoing.” He highlighted the importance of citizens’ involvement in the public consultation for this scheme, and added that this is the beginning of a full reform that will be implemented in this industry.