MBIE is implementing a Building Code System update programme on set dates twice a year. The next update – incorporating the consultation noted above – will be published in November this year, and the following in June next year. Having two consultation rounds of Building Code system updates per calendar year – outside of the Christmas / New Year period – is considered appropriate to ensure currency of the Acceptable Solutions and Verification Methods including the Standards they reference. This move responds to sector feedback that, to date, updates have been ad hoc and do not provide clarity and certainty for the sector.
Following engagement with a selection of stakeholders during 2016, MBIE is also continuing to develop an approach on how it considers the prioritisation of building Standards. The engagement sought views on which Standards needed to be updated. MBIE proposed a scheduled programme to update 47 NZ Standards and also identified 29 Joint AS/NZ Standards, 10 Australian Standards and 2 European Standards that need consideration.
A number of industry submissions were received and MBIE acknowledges the consideration and effort put into these submissions. They highlighted a common concern about the complexity and effort required to manage both national and joint international Standards. Submissions also made it clear industry resources available to do this are limited and it may be too onerous to attempt the programme on such a large scale.
MBIE’s approach, when developed, will help:
- prioritise the development of Standards to inform the bi-annual updates.
- MBIE and Standards New Zealand in their work on the development of joint Australian and New Zealand Standards managed by Standards Australia.
- ensure Standards that are new, amended or reviewed meet the criteria for referencing and are suitable to be included in bi-annual Building Code System updates.
- evaluate the content and role of secondary referenced Standards to ensure they are necessary and actually support the performance settings in the referencing Standard.
MBIE welcomes your feedback and input into these issues over the coming months.