Which Dublin GE16 Candidates Favour Independent Building Inspections? Dublin Inquirer

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by BRegs Blog | 25 February 2016

If you are wondering who to vote for and have strong opinions about Building Control in Ireland, a recent Dublin Inquirer article by Sam Trantum is worth reading. Overwhelmingly, the 36 candidates who replied favour independent building control inspections and it’s noticeable  that Priory Hall and the pyrites scandal are still live issues in many areas of the city (See article here). In today’s post we look at the following question and answers from GE16 candidates

“Are you for or against bringing in a new system of independent building inspections carried out by government inspectors to ensure that buildings are built to code?”

Some of the comments as follows:

“For, I can’t believe that this is even a question” Roslyn Fuller, Ind 

“My party has campaigned relentlessly against the dumbing-down of building regulations by Alan Kelly. The introduction of independent building inspections would be a good step towards ensuring that no more Priory Halls blight our city and inflict real hardship on families.” Eamon Ryan, Green Party

“For, the recent history of pyrite and fire-safety issues are hard lessons. To ensure that this does not happen again in the future, we need robust, independent inspection of all aspects of building, particularly housing. We also need to ensure robust penalties for those who breach guidelines with sub-standard work.” Mannix Flynn, Ind

“I have long articulated a need for independent building inspection” Clare Daly, Ind

“Building inspection regime is abysmal. See Priory Hall for the great cost of not inspecting buildings. This urgently needs to be resourced in order to save money in the long term” Ossian Smyth, Green Party

“I believe this is an absolute necessity.” Cieran Perry Ind

“I’m strongly in favour of this” Cian O’Callaghan SocDem

“absolutely for” Liam Coyne SocDem

“Sinn Fein wants to establish an Office of Planning Regulator to independently ensure quality and safety in construction” Dessie Ellis, SF & Chris Andrews SF

“Sinn Féin believe that primary responsibility should rest with the Department of the Environment and local authorities” Paul Donnelly SF

“We want an independent inspectorate to work alongside the S.I.9 rules for planning and building inspections” Denise Mitchell SF

 “For a new system of building inspections. No more Priory Halls” Micheal mcDonnacha SF

“We must do all that we can to ensure building standards are met to an acceptable level. Not to create more bureaucracy, but for safer, long-term, quality housing” Alan McStiofain Ind

“An inspectorate department of the Department of Environment, with strong legal powers, should be established. We should look at best practice across Europe before making a mess of it” Andrew Keegan PBPA 

“oh yeah” Frank O’Gorman Ind

“The Building Control (Amendment) Regulations 2014 now require greater accountability for compliance with the building regulations in the form of statutory certification of design and construction, lodgement of compliance documentation, mandatory inspections during construction and validation and registration of certificates…Local authorities as building control authorities already have strong powers of inspection and enforcement under the Building Control Acts 1990 to 2014. Arrangements for more comprehensive local authority inspections on developments are now in place, and it is intended that these will be enhanced further over time as construction output recovers.” Carrie Smyth, Labour

The following 17 Candidates supported Independent Building Control Inspections: OISÍN Ó HALMHAIN (GP), PAUL HAND (IND), BRID SMITH (PBPA), SARAH HOLLAND (SF), PAUL MURPHY (AAA), MICK DUFF (LAB), KIERAN ADAM QUIGLEY (IND), RONAN MCMAHON (RENUA), EILIS RYAN (WP), CORMAC MCKAY (DDI), RUTH COPPINGER (AAA), GINO KENNY (PBPA), TOM KIVLIHAN (GP), LORRAINE HENNESSY (WP), JIMMY DIGNAM (WP), MICHAEL O’BRIEN (AAA), JOHN LYONS (PBPA).

No candidate from Fine Gael or Fianna Fáil responded.

Other posts of interest:

Here’s How to Avoid Another Longboat Quay | Dublin Inquirer

98% say “Building Regulations introduced in recent years are acting as a barrier to construction” | Knight Frank Survey

BC(A)R SI.9 has added + 5% to Residential Costs | SCSI / DKM

“Building control regulations not fit for purpose” | Sunday Business Post

BC(A)R SI.9 Submission Series No 4: Proposal for a Better System

What do Building Control Regulations cost for a typical apartment?

Legal perspective: consumer benefit? BC(A)R SI.9 | look back 9

Building Failures – Is the consumer protected?

4 thoughts on “Which Dublin GE16 Candidates Favour Independent Building Inspections? Dublin Inquirer

  1. Jenny power

    I wrote my own BCaR notes and handed them to every candidate who called to my door and all bar the Green Candodate (in fairness is an architect) didn’t know what regulations I was talking about. Constituency: Dublin Central.

    Reply
  2. Michael O'Neill

    “No candidate from Fine Gael or Fianna Fáil responded.”

    No. Because their cronies in the building industry are quite happy stuffing it to the Assigned and Design Certifiers and running away from their liability to BUILD in compliance with the Regs instead of a set of documents.

    My informant tells me that Builder-developers are already trying to evade what little responsibility they are left with by tricks with their Development Companies.

    They are expert at that, having slithered through the sixties, seventies and eighties AND nineties AND NOUGHTIES not paying their VAT and winding up their companies.

    The Companies office need to get involved here and the Builders Guarantee must be made corporate within an adequately funded and insured company for a minimum of TEN YEARS.

    Reply
  3. Martin Keane

    Why don’t they protect the title “Builder” and put it on the same educational level as architects ,QS’s . They would not need the certifiers as the QS,Architect and Builder would be highly qualified professionals and this should bring down costs.

    Bring in a Licensing system to ensure trades and professionals were educated and trained to the required levels and this would allow clients to check they had the building knowledge and training to do the job, standards should improve. get rid of the cowboys.

    Bring in an Independent Building regulator to ensure a fairer and more equitable system for all users. Self -regulation does not work.

    Thier is a model which exist in another sector which could resolve a lot of issues as it is effect in the sector it operates. The majority of users comply with the system and compliance with the regulation is excellent, I don’t see why this system could not be used in the construction industry. It would require all stakeholders to ensure it worked.

    Reply
  4. Michael O'Neill

    Professional titles are not there to be cherry-picked to make silk purses out of sows ears. They are earned.

    Indeed the disastrous set of failures we have witnessed during the Noughties, suggest its not the Builders or their ‘title’ which need protecting – its the consumer who buys their badly built buildings.

    If and when Builders decide to sign up to a full time course of study and practise for 4 + 2 years (engineers) or perhaps 5 + 2 years (architects) then they might become eligible to seek a professional title.

    But to achieve a professional title they would have to submit to their work and on-thejob behaviour being scrutinized and they themselves examined by competent professionals.

    Otherwise there would be nothing to protect, because the assurance given by a professional title can only be founded on the competence, work practices and in-depth knowledge and skill of the individual in question.

    I believe that the vast majority of Builders – who have benefited from self-certification originally, and later from the Building Control (Amendment) Regulations – are unlikely to submit themselves and their work to detailed professional scrutiny.

    No doubt the plethora of Builder’s positive responses to the suggestion that they and their work be professionally assessed will prove me wrong.

    Reply

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