Explain the importance of ethical and professional conduct and sustainability practices as they apply to the property management profession.
The purpose of this report is to prepare a waste management and recycling plan for the proposed development being undertaken by Owners Corporation at 420 Smith Street, Canadian VIC 3350. This small/medium residential and office complex project is proposed to consist of:
- Food Retail
- Club Facilities
- Residential Apartments
The scope of this plan, as per Barnes, & Doidge, (2010), will include review of the building drawings and apartment layouts and shall provide a Waste Management Plan by including the following:
- Calculating the weekly waste and recyclable volumes.
- Provide recommendations to compact, store and transport the waste and the recyclable materials.
- Highlight handling and movement of Wastes and Recyclables inside the development area.
- Recommend the collection vehicles
- Provide references for collection companies and/or the council collection services.
All recommendations shall be strictly in compliance with the Local Council Codes, as well as BCA and Australian Standards’ statutory requirements. Important for the Owners Corporation and the occupiers is to understand the impact and scope of Section 173 of the Planning and Environment Act 1987. An Agreement under Section 173 is a Contract between the Local Council and the Owner Corporation and places certain restrictions on the use and maintenance of the land, assert Brammall, Tyson & Griswold, (2013).
A Section 173 Agreement tends to provide guidance for the character and development of a neighborhood. It requires that the Owners Corporation must adhere to the building requirements and the restrictions which are required to maintain the character and style of the area. This includes the requirement for landscaping as well as retaining and maintaining certain types of trees and plants, as per Emerald Gems, (2015).
The Owners Corporation is also required to ensure that it complies with the conditions given in the permits granted by the Local Council because when an owner obtains a permit, it becomes mandatory for it to enter into a Section 173 Agreement. The Owner Corporation is also bound by various continuous restrictions as well as ongoing requirements about the use or development of the land, says Forlee, (2012). The Agreement, under Section 173 also binds the present and all subsequent landowners, until it terminates after the specified time period of 12 months outlined in the Agreement. Since a Section 173 Agreement is a contract between the Owners Corporation and the Local Council, all parties involved must consent for the changes to be made to the land, says Park, (1994).
1.1 WASTE MANAGEMENT PLAN
The proposed waste management plan has been based on the following conditions-
- On-going use of all the proposed units.
- It does not include the demolition or construction activities.
- All calculations have been based on the drawings and information given by Box Hill Landmark Pty Ltd., the private collection company.
- Waste volume figures have been estimated and the actual volumes may be influenced by the occupiers, assert Chandrappa & Das, (2012).
- The operator’s disposition toward waste disposal and its recycling have been assumed on the development’s occupancy rate.
- Reference should be made to the annexed tables for rates and assumptions.
- Hard rubbish and green/garden wastes.
- Disposal of these shall be arranged by the manager via other contractors.
- All liquid waste, including cooking oil will be collected by a specialist contractor.
- All waste oil will be collected and stored as required, explains Wiggins, (2014).
GENERATED WASTE - VOLUME & ESTIMATE
The annexed waste estimates, which have been shown in un-compressed cubic metres per week, have been summarised in the tables as follows.
Commercial Waste which is generated by -
Club Facilities & Cafes
Residential Waste which is generated by –
The Owners Corporation has received recommendation from the collection company that it shall be using Collection Bins of capacity 260 and 120 litre. Estimating the collection of waste as shown in the tables annexed, the company has proposed 62 bins, as detailed by Daven & Klein, (2008).
As all bins and cleaner’s trolley would be ‘wheeled’ throughout the area, ramps if any, would require a maximum gradient of 1:14 for meeting the regulatory requirements. Items found unsuitable for disposal through garbage or recycling bins would be disposed-off as per instructions of the manager, assert Polprasert & Koottatep, (2007). Such items would include: large, heavy and liquid waste items. For minimising security and health issues, vandalism and odour/visual impact, Owners Corporation proposes implementation of the following:
- Transferring the waste and shifting the bins shall be done with minimum possible manual handling.
- The operator shall assess all manual handling risks as per the regulatory requirements and also provide appropriate documentation to the manager.
- Signage and usage labels for all garbage and recycling bins will be provided by the operator.
- The manager is responsible for ensuring prompt return of empty bins, once collection is over, to each refuse room, as detailed by Atkin & Brooks, (2009).
Since rodents, dogs and cats are a continuous source for spreading dieses by coming into direct contact of the garbage as well as the humans, the Owners Corporation proposes to ensure that all the bins and its storage areas shall be made secure and vermin proof and suitable ventilated in accordance with the Australian Standard AS 1668.2, according to Emerald Gems, (2015). It is also proposed that a proper bin wash area must be developed. This shall comprise of a tap and floor drain with proper trap and sewer connection. This will be located within each bin store area and the manager shall ensure that all the bin store areas are kept clean, bin lids are kept closed and the bins are washed regularly, as per Daven & Klein, (2008).
The manager shall also prepare suitable operational instructions and shall also provide an operational health and safety procedure brochure for site staff. The manager shall also formulate a traffic management plan and issue instructions for the safe operation of the collection-vehicles inside the premises, asserts Wiggins, (2014). This shall be implemented in consultation with the private collection company. Information about the appointment of the collection company should be provided to the Local Council for approval prior to starting the operations on site, explains Forlee, (2012).
The manager shall also ensure that direct access from the street to the premises is given to the collection company, as per Brammall, Tyson & Griswold, (2013). It is the Owners Corporation which will be responsible for all costs and payments associated with the waste collection services being provided by private collection company, explains Park, (1994).
Keeping in view the availability of space and reach of the collection trucks, the bins for residential users can be placed alongside Lot nos. 26 and 27. For commercial users, area between Common Property and Lot nos. 17-20 shall be most appropriate.
The Owners Corporation has the responsibility of educating the residential and the commercial tenants for responsibly carrying out the practices of waste management, as detailed by Chandrappa & Das, (2012). This can be achieved by:
- Providing documentary details about the waste management system which is in place for the use of all tenants and occupiers.
- Providing notifications to all occupiers and tenants to encourage waste separation.
- Labelling and colour coding all bins by stating different types of waste to be deposited in the appropriate garbage or recycling bins, assert Polprasert & Koottatep, (2007).
- Providing the residential tenants with manuals which detail the items to be disposed of through the garbage and recycling chutes in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations.
- Providing future changes to the regulatory requirements or to the developments’ rate of waste generation which may require the operator to conduct a waste audit and revise the waste management system already in place, as per Atkin & Brooks, (2009).
The limitations which restrict full capability utilization of the existing disposal system are being overcome with the modern automated chute waste system, explains Emerald Gems, (2015).
Chute Waste System
Residents are required to dispose waste by using the advances dual chute system. Whereas one chute is fully dedicated to the landfill, the other is dedicated to the fully commingled recycling process. The system is provided with dual chute doors placed appropriately. The garbage chute system has a bin compaction provision at the termination point for compressing the waste, thereby optimising the number of bins which are to be used for the waste collection, as detailed by Barnes, & Doidge, (2010).
Chuted Waste Disposal
For landfill waste collection, each resident is provided plastic lined bins which have anticipated capacity of 20 to 30 litres and commingled recycling bins without liners. Residents are required to dispose the two different waste streams into the appropriate chute, assert Brammall, Tyson & Griswold, (2013). Common areas are to be maintained by the cleaning staff and provided with plastic lined bins with minimum cumulative capacity of 30 litres. Cleaning staff shall be required to empty the bins into the appropriate chutes. Residents shall be provided with facilities which enable recycling to be accessed as easily as garbage disposal, explain Daven & Klein, (2008).
Managing Difficult Owners
Duties and Rights of the Lot Owners and the Occupiers
It is mandatory for all the lot owners to comply with the Owners Corporation Act, Owners Corporation Regulations and the Rules of the Owners Corporation as has been explained under Section 128. It is also mandatory, under section 134, for both, the seller of the lot and the buyer of the lot, to intimate the Owners Corporation, within a month of executing the contract, as per Brammall, Tyson & Griswold, (2013). In case the lot owner, who does not occupy the lot for period exceeding three months, it must forward to the Owners Corporation its mailing address for service of notices as specified under Section 136. An occupier of a lot must comply with the OC Act, OC Regulations and rules of the Owners Corporation. He is not to misuse or neglect common property, stipulates Section 137. There is, however no rule for the lot owner to reveal to the Owners Corporation, particulars of the occupier, as detailed by Barnes, & Doidge, (2010).
The impact of a trespass on common land or obstruction of a driveway by a motor vehicle, can either be a temporary nuisance or it can cause a major disruption on the road. Any self-help measures, such as attaching of the wheel clamps, obstructing or detaining the offending motor vehicle or demand of payment to release the vehicle, are offences under the Road Safety Act, 1986 (Vic) ( referred to as the RS Act). Moreover, the model rules of the OC too prohibit an obstruction of the common property, assert Emerald Gems, (2015).
The local police or the Council Officers or the Owners Corporation will not get itself involved with the illegal parking cases on private land, until and unless the offending vehicle is involved in blocking a common driveway and is obstructing traffic. However, the local council has the power of removing such an abandoned vehicle on private land, assert Forlee, (2012).
In community living, any car parked in the personal space of other resident are bound to present difficulties for using the road by the other resident. VicRoads does not provide the details of the registered owner of such a vehicle on grounds of privacy. Although the owner of the land or occupier of a house has the right to remove a trespassing vehicle from its property and parking it at a place which is within reasonable distance from the subjected land or house, as per Chandrappa & Das, (2012). However, such a person is liable if any damage is caused to the obstructing vehicle. Such a person can also be charged for theft or interfering with a vehicle under Section 70 of the RS Act, as per Polprasert & Koottatep, (2007).
Internal Dispute Resolution Process
In case of any internal dispute between two parties, a resolution process has been set out under Model Rule 6 (Schedule 2) of the Owners Corporation Regulations. An Owners Corporation can also make its own rules by following this process. OC is required to act within 14 working days after receiving the complaint in the approved form. A meeting should be held between the disputing parties and the grievance committee of the OC, assert Atkin & Brooks, (2009). Each party can make a representation through a lawyer or another representative. In case OC is satisfied that no action is required relating to the alleged breach, then Section 154 specifies that it should notify the complainant and give reasons for its decision. However, a legal action is required, the OC, prior to taking the legal action, may ask the person to rectify the breach and if this is not done, then OC, under Sections 155-157 must issue a final notice, as per Daven & Klein, (2008).
Although the dispute resolution provisions shown in the OC Act are complex, the Dispute Resolution Committee of an OC can settle the disputes in the following ways, asserts Wiggins, (2014).
- Dispute Resolution Under Part 10
Under Section 152, a lot owner or occupier or manager can make a complaint in writing, using the approved form, about any alleged breach of the OC Act, OC Regulations or OC Rules by the lot owner or occupier or manager. However, this section precludes any complaint against the OC or any of the committees, unless the complaint is related to something adverse done by the manager on behalf of the OC or its committee. Moreover, no complaint is entertained about a personal injury, as per Park, (1994).
Under Section 153, the OC must respond to a complaint which has been made under Section 152 in either of the following three ways:
- It can provide a notice, under Section 155, to rectify the breach. However, this must be followed by a Final Notice under Section 156 and ultimately, an application to VCAT.
- It can decide not to take any action.
- It can apply to VCAT for an order which requires the person to rectify the breach.
However, a complainant can formally request the Director of Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV) for referring the matter to a conciliation as specified under Section 160, as specified by Atkin & Brooks, (2009).
In case the Owners Corporation does not give a positive response or in case the complainant is not satisfied with the outcome, the above mentioned conciliation process is available through CAV. There is nothing to stop the complainant (but not the Owners Corporation) from applying directly to CAV and to avoid the internal dispute resolution process followed by the Owners Corporation, as detailed by Emerald Gems, (2015).
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Brammall, B., Tyson, E. and Griswold, R.S. 2013. Property Investing For Dummies – Australia, 2nd ed. John Wiley & Sons, Milton, QLD.
Chandrappa, R. and Das, D.B. 2012. Solid Waste Management: Principles and Practice. Springer Science & Business Media, Berlin.
Daven, J.I. and Klein, R.N. 2008. Progress in Waste Management Research. Nova Publishers, New York.
Emerald Gems. 2015. Built Environment and Property Management: A Focus on Australia. Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley.
Forlee, R. 2012. Australian Residential Property Development: A Step-by-Step Guide for Investors. John Wiley & Sons, Milton, QLD.
Park, A. 1994. Facilities Management: An Explanation. Macmillan International Higher Education, Hampshire.
Polprasert, C. and Koottatep, T. 2007. Organic Waste Recycling. IWA Publishing, London.
Wiggins, J.M. 2014. Facilities Manager's Desk Reference, 2nd ed. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester.