Last month, three days into his new role as NSW Building Commissioner, David Chandler appeared before the NSW Parliament’s Public Accountability Committee inquiry into Building Standards, Building Quality and Building Disputes.
It was no meet and greet. It was a grilling, at times testy and fractious. But it did point, ahead of new legislation and corporate plans, to the key philosophies and themes that Chandler will bring to the repair of the state’s construction industry.
To sum up the Chandler approach, it is about more responsibility, not more red tape.
It is a “legislation-light” approach. The focus is on leadership, and using all the levers of the sector, including the financiers and the insurers, as much as legislation, to drive lasting change.
“While regulation and compliance are the centrepiece of this picture, they are not going to solve all the issues.” Chandler said in a prepared statement. “The picture is much bigger than this. We need a sea change in industry culture and that culture needs to be one of accountability and pride. The industry must be accountable to regulators, the broader market, and particularly the customers.”