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NSW changes construction legislation to support industry

Construction sites in New South Wales can now operate on weekends and public holidays under new rules to support the building industry during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Construction sites in New South Wales can now operate on weekends and public holidays under new rules to support the building industry during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The changes were introduced by the NSW Government to allow workers to abide by social distancing rules while keeping construction projects open, by allowing work to be spread across more days of the week.

Planning and Public Spaces Minister Rob Stokes said the construction industry makes more almost 10 per cent of NSW’s economy and will be vital in keeping people in jobs and keeping investment flowing in the coming weeks and months.

“We’re doing what we can to support the industry in line with the current medical advice by extending weekday construction site operating hours to weekends and public holidays,” he said.

“The extended hours allow the industry to facilitate social distancing on construction sites, while minimising the potential for lost productivity during the pandemic.

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“In NSW there are almost 400,000 people employed in the property and construction industry and we are committed to doing everything we can to keep each of them in work, but most importantly, to keep them safe and healthy.”

The Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 was amended on 24 March to enable Stokes to issue orders that override normal planning controls during the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure the health, safety and welfare of communities.

The Environmental Planning and Assessment (COVID-19 Development – Construction Work Days) Order 2020 is now in place and will continue until the COVID-19 pandemic is over, or the advice of NSW Health changes.

Compliance with this Order will be monitored and reviewed if there any adverse impacts on the community or from a public health perspective.

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