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Appendix F: Glossary

Glossary

Agency (or the agency)

Used in this report to refer to the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC).

APS employee

A person engaged under section 22, or engaged as an APS employee under section 72 of the Public Service Act 1999.

Award

A legal instrument that sets out the minimum wages and conditions for the employees who are covered by it within a particular industry or occupation. Other known term: modern award.

Building contractor

A person who has entered into, or who has offered to enter into, a contract for services under which the person carries out building work, or arranges for building work to be carried out.

Building industry participant

A building industry participant is:

  • a building employee, employer or contractor
  • a person who enters into a contract with a building contractor under which the building contractor agrees to carry out building work or to arrange for building work to be carried out
  • a building association, or
  • an officer, delegate, employee or other representative of a building association.

Building work

Building work includes:

  • any of the following activities, insofar as they relate to buildings, structures or works that form, or are to form, part of land (including land beneath water), whether permanently or temporarily:
    • construction
    • alteration
    • extension
    • restoration
    • repair
    • demolition or
    • dismantling.
  • the same activities listed above, insofar as they relate to railways (not including rolling stock) and docks
  • the installation in any building, structures or works of fittings forming or to form part of land, such as:
    • heating
    • lighting
    • air-conditioning
    • ventilation
    • power supply
    • drainage
    • sanitation
    • water supply
    • fire protection
    • security
    • communications systems.
  • any operation that is part of, in preparation for, or in completion of, any of the work described above, including:
    • site clearance, earth-moving, excavation, tunnelling or boring
    • laying of foundations
    • erection, maintenance or dismantling of scaffolding
    • on-site or off-site prefabrication of made-to-order components to form part of any building, structure or works
    • site restoration, landscaping or the provision of roadways and other access works.
  • the transportation or supply of goods to be used for any of the work mentioned above, directly to building sites (including any resources platform) where that work is being, or may be, performed.

Building work does not include activities associated with:

  • drilling and resources extraction, or
  • domestic housing (unless a multi‑dwelling development that consists of, or includes, the construction of at least five single‑dwelling houses).

Building codes

Used in instances when referring to both the Building Code 2013 and the Building Code 2016. See also Building Code 2013 and Building Code 2016.

Building Code 2013

Rules that set out the Australian Government’s expected standards for building contractors or building industry participants involved in Commonwealth funded construction projects. The Building Code 2013 continues to operate in relation to building work to which it applied prior to 2 December 2016. See also Building Code 2016.

Building Code 2016

The Code for the Tendering and Performance of Building Work 2016, which commenced on 2 December 2016 and sets out the Australian Government’s expected standards for building contractors or building industry participants that seek to be, or are, involved in Commonwealth funded construction projects. The Building Code 2016 applies to building contractors or building industry participants that could be required to comply with the Building Code 2016 by section 34 of the BCIIP Act who submit an expression of interest or tender (howsoever described) for Commonwealth funded building work on or after 2 December 2016. See also Building Code 2013.

Code covered entity

A building contractor or building industry participant that could be required to comply with the Building Code 2016 by section 34 of the BCIIP Act and has become subject to the Building Code 2016 by submitting an expression of interest or tender (howsoever described) for Commonwealth funded building work on or after 2 December 2016.

Coercion

The act of organising or taking action, or threatening to organise or take action, against another person with intent to coerce the person, or a third person, to do something they do not want to do.

Common law contract

An individual contract of employment between an employer and an employee that is not lodged or certified under federal or state/territory legislation but is subject to award requirements and provisions.

Corporate governance

The process by which agencies are directed and controlled. It is generally understood to encompass authority, accountability, stewardship, leadership, direction and control.

Enterprise agreement

An agreement made under the Fair Work Act (on or after 1 July 2009) between one or more employers and a group of employees in relation to terms and conditions of employment for those employees.

Examination

An attendance by a person, before the Commissioner, where the person is required to answer questions relevant to an investigation.

Funding entity

A government agency that procures Commonwealth funded construction work. For the purposes of the Building Code 2016, it is either of the following:

  • a non-corporate Commonwealth entity within the meaning of the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013, or
  • a corporate Commonwealth entity within the meaning of the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 that is directed by the Minister for Finance to comply with the Building Code 2016.

Freedom of association

The right that employees, employers and contractors have to join or not join a union.

Industrial action

The refusal by employees to perform work or the performance of work in a manner that is intended to reduce productivity in a workplace (refer to section 7 of the BCIIP Act for a full definition). See also Unlawful industrial action.

Labour market testing

Section 11F of the Building Code 2016 imposes new requirements on employers when they want to hire people to undertake building work who are not Australian citizens or Australian permanent residents. This section of the Building Code 2016 requires a series of tests and activities to be applied during such recruitment, commonly referred to as ‘labour market testing’.

Portfolio Budget Statements (PBS)

Statements prepared by portfolios to explain the budget appropriations in terms of planned government outcomes.

Program

An activity, or group of activities, that delivers benefits, services or transfer payments to individuals, industry/business or the community and is the primary vehicle/s for government agencies to achieve the results set out in their PBS outcome statements.

Right of entry

The right that certain individuals have to enter worksites. The Fair Work Act and the various state and territory acts contain provisions regulating right of entry.

Security of payments

A building contractor’s right to receive payments that are due, as outlined in their contract and without delay. Each state and territory has its own security of payment laws that provide a rapid statutory mechanism for resolving payment disputes on an interim basis. This is known as adjudication. The ABCC is responsible for monitoring the security of payments requirements in the building codes.

Sham contracting

An attempt by an employer to misrepresent or disguise an employment relationship as an independent contracting arrangement.

Unlawful industrial action

Building industrial action is unlawful if it is:

  • industrial action under section 7 of the BCIIP Act
  • not protected industrial action under section 8 of the BCIIP Act.

Workplace relations management plan

A document specific to a particular Commonwealth funded project that outlines how a head contractor will manage workplace relations issues on that project. A workplace relations management plan is required if a project meets the Commonwealth funding thresholds in Schedule 2 to the Building Code 2016. See also Building Code 2016.