Port Macquarie-Hastings Council has confirmed combustible cladding has been used on several buildings in the local government area.
Affected buildings are identified on a NSW Claddings Register. Information within the register has not been made public.
A flammable cladding material is considered a major factor in the deadly 2017 Grenfell Tower fire in London which claimed 71 lives, and a blaze at Melbourne's Lacrosse Tower in 2014.
An initial report into the Grenfell Tower fire has been released. Those findings have pointed to the use of combustible materials during refurbishment of Grenfell Tower as central to the catastrophic events.
Council director Melissa Watkins says council has been advised by NSW Fire & Rescue Claddings Task Force and the NSW government of the buildings believed to contain combustible cladding within the local government area.
"Council has written to the owners of the buildings, which are privately owned, and requested the submission of detailed action plans," Ms Watkins said.
"In this regard, building owners have been requested to engage an appropriately qualified and experienced consultant to identify the properties of any external combustible cladding on the building and submit to council, if required, a means of rectification.
"The information is reviewed and assessed by council staff to determine if circumstances exist where the provisions for fire safety are inadequate due to the use of external combustible cladding.
"Once the means of rectification has been formally agreed to, fire safety orders have and will be issued by council to assist building owners to resolve the issue.
In some instances rectification works which required the removal of the combustible cladding on affected buildings has already been completed.Council director Melissa Watkins
"In some instances rectification works which required the removal of the combustible cladding on affected buildings has already been completed.
"It is understood that risk assessment and formal action in respect to buildings in our LGA, which are owned or administered by Crown Authorities, will be undertaken by the NSW government."
The state parliament is debating if information on the register should be made public.
"I understand that the NSW Parliament is presently debating the merit of this position," Ms Watkins added.
"As required, council has inspected most the premises identified to date and has taken action as outlined above."
The NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment says there are no department-approved buildings in Port Macquarie where combustible cladding has been identified.
"Port Macquarie-Hastings Council is the consent authority for the building or buildings in question and would be responsible for the identification of any flammable cladding and any subsequent fire safety orders," a spokesperson said.
The Canberra Times reports that boss of the ACT Master Builders Association, Michael Hopkins, Strata Community Association president Chris Miller, Owners Corporation head Gary Petherbridge and property lawyer Susan Proctor co-signed a letter to the building minister Gordon Ramsay requesting a meeting to discuss "increasing concerns" about combustible cladding in Canberra buildings.
Their main concern related to insurance for buildings where combustible cladding had been detected. In those cases, insurance premiums were "dramatically increasing" and owners were struggling to secure appropriate cover for their building, the letter said.
They said the ACT government should act quickly to audit "high-risk" buildings, as well as develop a plan for compensating owners and tenants.
The results of the audits should be provided to insurance companies and building owners, the letter read.
The groups said if insurers had flagged a building as unsafe, then "surely it was incumbent" on the government to rectify the problem, given that it was responsible for approving buildings for occupancy.
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