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The top building association at ACT urges the government to include housing projects in the reopening of the construction sector, saying the “unfair” decision to overlook them will put businesses at risk and leave customers in limbo. The Master Builders Association ACT has launched an online petition demanding that all construction resume on September 3rd, not just government projects, major projects, and construction. The petition has received more than 2,300 signatures just hours since it was published. The association’s chairman Michael Hopkins said the decision to exclude small projects from next week’s reopening plan made “no sense” and angered the sector. He said the security protocols developed for the industry could be implemented on both small and large construction sites. READ MORE “By leaving the small projects out of the reopening plan, the financial and psychological impact on the industry and community is compounded,” said Hopkins. “The government reopening plan means a developer can work on an ACT government housing project, but the same developer cannot work next door on a new home for a first-time buyer or someone renting temporary accommodation until their new home is ready The ACT construction sector had to shut down abruptly when Canberra was thrown into a snap-down lock earlier this month. The government was under pressure to restart the sector, which remained open throughout the lockdown last year – including from Liberal Senator Zed Seselja. Prime Minister Andrew Barr on Friday announced a plan to gradually reopen the sector from September 3rd. The plan was welcomed in some sections, with ACT Property Council executive Adina Cirson describing it as a “very good step in the right direction”. The development group’s petition, launched overnight on Saturday, said the decision to only give the green light to government projects, construction and large-scale developments was “unfair and would jeopardize the very existence of many small businesses.” It warned home buyers who could face homelessness or be forced to find expensive temporary housing due to the closure of the residential sector. ACT opposition leader Elizabeth Lee on Sunday morning in a social media post called on Mr Barr to come up with a clear plan for the sector to reopen. “If smaller projects are able to adhere to the same safety protocols, there is no reason to exclude them from health counseling plans to safely resume construction,” she wrote. “These smaller businesses are facing tremendous challenges because they don’t know how to pay their mortgage, put groceries on the table, or pay their next utility bill, and they are no closer to having a clear plan of when to get back to work . ” Our coverage of the health and safety aspects of this COVID-19 outbreak in the ACT and lockdown is freely available to everyone. However, we rely on subscription income to support our journalism. If you are able, please subscribe here. If you are already a subscriber, thank you for your support. You can also subscribe to our newsletter for regular updates. Our journalists work hard to provide the community with local, breaking news. Here’s how you can still access our trusted content:

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The top building association at ACT urges the government to include housing projects in the reopening of the construction sector, saying the “unfair” decision to overlook them will put businesses at risk and leave customers in limbo.

The petition has received more than 2,300 signatures just hours since it was published.

The association’s chairman Michael Hopkins said the decision to exclude small projects from next week’s reopening plan made “no sense” and angered the sector.

He said the security protocols developed for the industry could be implemented on both small and large construction sites.

“By leaving the small projects out of the reopening plan, the financial and psychological impact on the industry and community will be compounded,” said Hopkins.

“The government reopening plan means a developer can work on an ACT government housing project, but the same developer cannot work next door on a new home for a first-time buyer or someone renting temporary accommodation until their new home is ready is.”

The ACT construction sector had to shut down abruptly when Canberra was thrown into a snap-down lock earlier this month.

The government was under pressure to restart the sector, which remained open throughout the lockdown last year – including from Liberal Senator Zed Seselja.

Prime Minister Andrew Barr on Friday announced a plan to gradually reopen the sector from September 3rd. The plan was welcomed in some sections, with ACT Property Council executive Adina Cirson describing it as a “very good step in the right direction”.

The development group’s petition, launched overnight on Saturday, said the decision to only give the green light to government projects, construction and large-scale developments was “unfair and would jeopardize the very existence of many small businesses.”

It warned home buyers who could face homelessness or be forced to find expensive temporary housing due to the closure of the residential sector.

ACT opposition leader Elizabeth Lee on Sunday morning in a social media post called on Mr Barr to come up with a clear plan for the sector to reopen.

“If smaller projects are able to adhere to the same safety protocols, there is no reason why they should be excluded from plans to safely resume construction as part of health counseling,” she wrote.

“These smaller businesses are facing tremendous challenges because they don’t know how to pay their mortgage, put groceries on the table, or pay their next utility bills, and they are no closer to having a clear plan for when to get back to work . “

Our coverage of the health and safety aspects of this COVID-19 outbreak in the ACT and lockdown is freely available to everyone. However, we rely on subscription income to support our journalism. If you are able, please subscribe here. If you are already a subscriber, thank you for your support. You can also subscribe to our newsletter for regular updates.

Our journalists work hard to provide the community with local, breaking news. Here’s how you can still access our trusted content: