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‘We won’t rob you of your hard-earned money’: Matt Kean on cost cutting for tradies

In a clear bid to win over the blue-collar vote, the NSW Berejiklian Government has unveiled a major cost cutting plan for the state’s tradies.

Under a new licensing regime, licensing fees across a string of home building trades will be slashed. Current costs of up to $605 every three years will become just $51 over five years, as the government sets its sights on eradicating red tape laden regulatory burdens and removing compliance costs from the sector.

After a discussion paper mooted the idea of scrapping licences entirely, Better Regulations Minister Matt Kean says the policy strikes the right balance between slashing redundant regulation whilst also ensuring consumer and worker protection remains intact.

“We realise that licencing regimes are really important for consumer protection and for the protection of worker safety,” he tells Luke Grant.

“So we thought how can we keep those protections in place but still cut costs to make it easier for tradies? What we’ve come up with is the lifetime licencing agreement.”

“You’ll still be able to get a licence and still need to meet all the requirements to get that licence. But what we won’t do is rob you of your hard-earned money every year to renew that licence. Tradies want to know that when they work hard, they’re not going to have government putting their hand in their pocket, taking their hard-earned money.”

“And there’ll be over 27,000 tradies in 13 licensing categories that will save about $52 million in the next decade as a result of these reforms.”

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Luke Grant