Update for PSA members: What was discussed at the Better Regulation Division Consultative Subcommittee
Your union, along with local delegates, attended the Better Regulation Division (BRD) Consultative Subcommittee on 30 May 2023.
The following matters were discussed:
Building Inspectors recruitment drive
There are four new starters with the business area going out for further fourth time to recruit to the final six positions that remain unfilled. We will keep this on the agenda for the next meeting.
Magnetic signage for vehicles
It was agreed that white magnetic strips will be provided for vehicles to cover permanent signage when vehicles are not in use for work purposes. Delegate David Gibbs will work with the Health and Safety Representative in the team to create a policy.
Personal protection equipmemt
The representative from Safety and Wellbeing advised that the allocation of $250 for boots is consistent across Inspectorates. Because the language in the variety of Awards is not consistent they have not yet created one procedure for all person protection equipment across the board. We should have further information prior to or at the next meeting.
Auto Inspector role description
The PSA sought clarification about this matter, as your union did not request a review nor have we been involved in any consultation about this. We were advised that HR/People and Culture had also not been involved in any discussions about this and were unaware of any request for a review of the role description. It was agreed the PSA would be consulted, along with staff, as and when the business commits to undertaking a review of the role description.
Mutual Sick Leave Fund
Deductions for this year have not yet occurred. Hours will be deducted in the next pay period. The PSA has been discussing the matter with the Department and we are now agreed that the process is up to date. The Department has responded to questions about past usage and we believe that this matter is now resolved and can be removed from the agenda going forward.
PSA was advised that if bullbars are approved by Directors they will be installed prior to vehicle delivery. If they are not approved and it is not deemed a business requirement, Inspectors will be required to pay for the bars themselves. Delegate John Whatman raised concerns about whether a risk assessment was considered when Directors declined requests. Safety and Wellbeing will come back to us on this matter. The PSA will seek feedback from members in relation to any concerns about bullbars.
Safe Storage of food and drink
While the business suggested nothing could be done as people have differing requirements and needs to store provisions, your union asked that they go back and do further work on this matter. We understand that Inspectors in some regional areas have storage and would like something applied across the board. This will be revisited at the next meeting if not before.
Principal Inspector vs State Inspector Talent Pool
We were advised that Principal Inspector is a progression not a comparative assessment. It is possible to reach this stage earlier by exception if someone meets the components of the Diploma. The PSA will discuss individual member concerns with the business outside the committee forum.
The PSA raised questions about the procedure around Inspector progression, specifically whether members can move from a lower grade to a higher grade in fewer than four years if they have relevant qualifications/experience. We were advised that, under the current policy, you do still have to wait for four years before progressing. They are looking at reviewing the policy. The PSA advised it would be interested in putting a representative on the working group.
Travel Allowance vs P Card
Members had raised concerns about the number of receipts they collect when travelling, the time it takes to enter them into the system and the frequent reminders to submit them. The Department is willing to take a look at whether an allowance might be more appropriate for travel greater than three days and will come back on this.
The Department is still checking who are and are not getting paid the allowance. The allowance was attached incorrectly in the system to individuals instead of roles. They estimate that it will take a further four to five weeks to fix this and then people should be automatically paid the allowance if they are in the appropriate roles. This may result in back pay of claims. We should have further information on this by the next meeting.
So far all we know is that there was an interim report due in May around scope and bodies interviewed. The final report is due in November 2023.
The Department is working on a policy to be implemented across the cluster.
PSA raised a question around GIPA request turnaround time. Delegate John Whatman advised that Inspectors are looking for guidance around the timeframe. Employee Relations suggested an education piece. They will talk to the GIPA team about providing guidance.
The next BRD CSC will be held in August. The PSA will be in touch with members in relation to agenda items prior.