In response to recent media attention, the CFMEU has conceded that the CFMEU/Breakaway Group EBA is not compliant with the proposed Building Code 2014.
The new CFMEU position actually goes further, stating “at no point has the CFMEU suggested or maintained that the current 2016 Agreement would be compliant with the proposed draft 2014 Code”.
Whilst surprising, this news will no doubt be welcomed by the significant number of members who have been repeatedly told otherwise by CFMEU representatives over the past 4 months.
The CFMEU focus is therefore likely to return to the proposed Building Code 2014 not having legal effect. Members will recall from previous advice, that the proposed Building Code 2014 was publicly released back in April 2014, with the legislation that would give effect to the proposed Building Code 2014 likely to go back before federal Parliament within a few weeks.
Should the legislation be passed and Building Code 2014 take effect, employers entering into an enterprise agreement after the 24 April 2014 will need to ensure that it is compliant with Building Code 2014 in order to be eligible to tender for future Commonwealth-funded work.
Members will also recall from previous advice Master Builders’ understanding that whilst the CFMEU/Breakaway Group had agreed a version of the EBA that was compliant with the current Building Code 2013, they did not have a version that was compliant with the proposed Building Code 2014. This advice remains unchanged.
Master Builders notes that FWBC has recently put out an alert providing examples of agreements assessed as compliant with the current Building Code 2013. However, as noted on their website, FWBC does not assess enterprise agreements for compliance with the proposed Building Code 2014. This is a role currently undertaken by the Department of Employment. Members will recall that the CFMEU/Breakaway Group EBA has been assessed by the Department of Employment as non-compliant with Building Code 2014. A copy of the assessment is available here.
Master Builders therefore continues to advise members of the attendant risk of signing onto the CFMEU/Breakaway Group EBA, and remind members holding the extant Industry EBA 2011-2015 (and who entered into it prior to 24 April 2014) that they remain compliant with both the current Building Code 2013 and the proposed Building Code 2014.
Members seeking further information should contact the IR Department on (03) 9411 4560.