cladding act
Certain types of high-risk cladding are prohibited. Image – Canva.
  • Scheme will offer 50% rebate to cover the cost of undertaking testing and assessment of buildings
  • Phase two of the scheme will include concessional loans to assist in removing cladding
  • Similar schemes are already in place nationally

In order for building owners to test whether their building has combustible cladding, the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) government has launched the Private Buildings Cladding Scheme.

The first phase of the scheme offers eligible owners a 50% rebate to cover the cost of undertaking testing and assessment of each building, up to $20,000.

If a building is required to have cladding remediation work, concessional loans will be available. Further details surrounding these loans will be made in phase two once outcomes from the current phase are known.

“We recognise the challenges faced by apartment building owners to address combustible cladding without assistance, which is why the scheme will provide financial support during phase one of testing and assessment and concessional loans for phase two of rectification,” said the Minister for Sustainable Building and Construction, Rebecca Vassarotti.

“The scheme will provide rebates to eligible owners of apartment buildings to undertake testing and assessment of their building’s cladding.

“This testing will determine the level of risk, if any, that cladding represents, and what actions the building owners should take to reduce the risk.”

Rebecca Vassarotti, Minister for Sustainable Building and Construction

There are many similar schemes in place nationally, such as in New South Wales, where 214 buildings are so far eligible for the program.

“The ACT has been able to assess the approaches of other jurisdictions and design a scheme specifically for our region to ensure cladding works are carried out on the highest risk privately-owned residential buildings,” said Ms Vassarotti.

“We are committed to ensuring that the testing and assessment of cladding is done professionally and that owners get as much assistance as they need to guide them through that process.”

Under the scheme, an eligible building is defined as a:

  • Apartment building three storeys or higher, or a cluster of residential buildings near each other, which represent a high fire risk;
  • A building or buildings that has mixed uses such as a residential apartment with ground floor shops or offices; or,
  • A building is judged to contain combustible cladding based on reasonable grounds by the Owners Corporation.

As part of the scheme, the ACT government is hosting an open and publicly available list with relevant suppliers who can undertake cladding work in the territory.

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