SA President Report
This past financial year has been a year of change.
Firstly, I would like to honour my predecessor, Marc Steen. Marc brought a fresh approach to the SCA (SA) as President and while he held the position called for more engagement across all aspects of the association. Marc, thank-you for all the work you put in to get the SCA (SA) to where it is presently.
In my first 8 months in the role as President for SCA (SA) I have found external stakeholder engagement has increased and our industry body accepted across a range of sectors to approach us for advice and advocacy.
During my term in the role, I have been working on progressing some key aspects and issues of Body Corporate Management that the Executive Chapter have identified which include:
• Developing on the current critical messages of the SCA (SA)
• Why use an SCA(SA), Member
• Regulatory Reform
• Expanding on the education provided to Members
• Developing new ways to present information to Members
• Continuing to lobby relevant authorities to ensure that Members voices are heard, understood and acted upon.
During the last few months of Marc’s term, we noted minor changes to the Strata Regulations which came into effect on 1st September 2018.
As noted by HWL Ebsworth Lawyers in our Spring edition of the Inside Strata magazine (https://insidestrata.partica.online/insidestrata/spring-2018/flipbook/32/), since 1 June 2009, it has not been possible to deposit new strata plans under the Strata Titles Act 1988 (STA). New divisions now use the Community Titles Act 1996 (CTA). However, while provision was made for strata title unit owners to be able to easily convert existing strata schemes to community titled schemes, unconverted strata corporations existing at 1 June 2009 were not affected by the change and are still regulated under the STA and the regulations under that Act.
The Strata Titles Regulations 2003 made under the STA expired and were replaced by the Strata Titles Regulations 2018 (2018 Regulations). The amendments introduced by the 2018 Regulations are relatively minor, and primarily serve to remove redundant provisions and encourage a greater reliance on electronic record keeping systems.
A more comprehensive review of the strata legislation was undertaken in parallel with this.
The Environment, Resources and Development Committee of the South Australian Parliament (ERD Committee) recently undertook a review of strata titles regulation in South Australia. On 26 July 2018 the Government's response to the recommendations in the ERD Committee's report was tabled in Parliament. This has led to 3 new draft pieces of legislation with proposed changes to implement those ERD Committee recommendations:
draft Statutes Amendment (Community and Strata Titles) Bill 2018 and
draft Community Titles (Miscellaneous) Variation Regulations 2018 and
draft Strata Titles (Miscellaneous) Variation Regulations 2018
SCA (SA) welcomed most of the proposed changes, many of which aim to improve the transparency and disclosure of body corporate managers. In addition to the proposals, there are a number of more far reaching changes that SCA (SA) is providing input to the government on including:
changing the quorum requirements to make it much easier to form a quorum and remove the need for adjourned meetings
‘retire’ the Strata Title Act and convert all existing Strata Titles to Community Strata Title
requiring strata managers to be licenced
adoption of a Defect Fund for new developments
amend the Strata Articles to allow for fines to be applied
This is a time when all parties come to the public and offer a “Solution”.
In light of the recent events in the building industry with cladding, ACCC Northern Australia Insurance Inquiry and the Banking Royal Commission, we expected to see some clear and concise policy positions from the parties.
In South Australia we had two member changes to our electorates that have a high concentration of titles under management.
With the retiring of Kate Ellis MP the seat of Adelaide was contested by Steve Georganas MP, who won the neighbouring seat of Hindmarsh at the 2016 election, having previously represented the seat 2004-2013.
With the retiring of Christopher Pyne MP the seat of Sturt was contested by James Stevens MP, Mr Stevens was working as Chief of Staff to South Australian Premier Steven Marshall.
We wrote to both members congratulating them on their success and eagerness to work alongside them as issues pertaining to our industry arise.
In October 2018, the inaugural Savant Energy SCA (SA) Symposium was held at the Glenelg Golf Club. The event was well attended with over 100 participants, and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. The event covered a variety of topics, including Cladding, Urban Development and Design, Insurance update and Legislative Reform. We will build on the success of this event and look forward to continuing this event and the quality education provided by SCA (SA).
The CHU SCA (SA) Awards night was held in November 2018 at the Adelaide Oval, with MC Wayne Phillips keeping us on track and reminding us he has the third highest score on debut for an Australian. Congratulations go out to all the winners as well as everyone who took the time to enter the awards. The awards night has quickly turned into the pre-eminent night for the strata industry in South Australia and we will now be looking to expand the invite list to include related industries, government ministers and journalists.
Essay Award - Tony Johnson, Horner Management
Support Team Member of the Year - Lauren Piliotis, Strata Data
Strata Community Manager of the Year – Rising Star - Julie Bennet, Strata Data
Strata Community Manager of the Year - Tony Johnson, Horner Management
Strata Community Management Business of the Year – Large – Strata Data
We would like to congratulate Lauren Piliotis and also the team from Strata Data for representing South Australia in taking home with them two awards, Support Team Member of the Year and Strata Community Management Business of the Year in a tie with a NSW company.
We started 2019 with a well-being and resilience breakfast in February with Rebecca Smith, fitness industry professional and former physiotherapist. It was important for us to begin the year thinking about looking after ourselves and our teams during our busy and complex roles.
In partnership with Macquarie Bank, SCA held the inaugural Women in Strata boardroom lunch event in May 2019. The lunch began with Rosalind Coffey talking on the strong integration of employee experience (EX) and client experience (CX). She shared human-centered design as framework that develops solutions to problems by involving the human perspective in all steps of the problem-solving process. This opened the round table discussion on what each of the members are seeing in their client base. It was great to hear of the success of this event and the responses from those in attendance being so positive - rest assured, this will now be a regular event.
I had the benefit of attending the SCA National Conference and seeing many excellent speakers and panels. The first panel was the best if I say so myself! I congratulate the SA delegation mixing with suppliers and other companies from around the country. It is great that we are all creating long lasting collaborative communities.
And I am excited to say we have the SCA National Conference coming to Adelaide next year from 2-4 June 2020 at the Adelaide Convention Centre. We look forward to all our local members attending and receiving the value of a local conference in our home town.
National Activity Update
Across Australia and New Zealand, SCA has been working closely together to improve the Advocacy, Best Practice, and Education for our members.
Over the past 12 months national has
Submitted a response to the ACCC Northern Australia Insurance Inquiry.
Hosted members on the SCA International Study Tour 2019 in Japan
Held the SCA National Conference 2019 in Auckland
Launched the Strata Management Practice Standard
Updated national Committee Training Program for Owners
Supported the Australian Apartment Advocacy Survey
Increased in SCA Trainers; and
Supported of the Monitored Fire Alarm and Lift Phone Migration to NBN.
New projects happening nationally for SCA which will provide value to local members South Australia include:
The biennial National Strata Data Report 2020
Developing a draft Building Manual Guideline to support Strata Managers and Suppliers to the sector from recommendations in the Shergold Weir Report
Migration to a new membership database with a cloud based platform
Updating the SCA Website
Nationally aligned Accreditation Program
Aligning Head Office Services through Service Level Agreements to support all chapters
New National eLearning Platform to get a broad reach to all strata managers, suppliers and owners
Strengthening the Cert IV in Strata Community Management delivery from providers
Developing the Diploma in Strata Community Management
Developing an education program for Suppliers; and
Working with NBN Ready to Connect program to assist Strata Communities
I would like to acknowledge and thank all our partners. Without their support, none of this would be possible. Our Platinum Partners for this past FY include CHU and Higgins, and our Gold Partners include QIA, StrataLoans, Ebix, Expert Insurance, and Origin Energy Retail Ltd.
Finally, I would like to thank the 2018/19 SA Executive and our members for their ongoing support. Joshua Baldwin