NSW Branch Update


The last NSW branch meeting took place on the 18 October 2021. 

I will take the opportunity on the behalf of the AEPMA NSW ACT State Council Delegates to wish you (the members) and your families a Merry Christmas and a Happy and safe New Year 2022.

I sincerely hope it will be better than 2020 & 2021.

Due to the pending introduction of a Timber Pest Licence or Termite Pest Management Technician Licence. I would like to clarify with you, a few things.

First, a bit of history of which I know many of you would be aware:

For many years, Pest Managers, including myself, have complained about the “shonks” doing bad termite work and cheap, without been qualified and giving the good guys (us) a bad image (does that sound right?). 

AEPMA has tried for many years to raise the bar on the education level for the industry however in NSW, WorkCover, who was administrating the Pest Management Industry had no intention to go down the path of licencing termite work as it was not in their work charter. They were only interested in health and safety (not if you were qualified to do the job). 

It was also clear that if there were no mandatory requirements for termite work, many people would not do the training such as units 8 & 10 (not all, many people were proud of their achievements).

A few years ago, when NSW EPA took over Pest Management licencing it become clear to the AEPMA NSW ACT State Council members that there was an opportunity for change. NSW EPA sought advice from AEPMA NSW on Urban Pest Management in the drafting of the NSW Pesticides Regulation 2017. The State Council put together, with the input of several Industry members representing big and small companies a proposal that we took to NSW EPA. 

Some items were adopted in the Pesticides Regulation and many were not (that won’t be the first time). 

While it was somewhat disappointing, we knew we had to keep going at EPA (we lost a battle but not the war so to speak). The good thing was the door had opened between us and them.

NSW EPA was keen to work with us. They also realised very quickly the difference between what we call a general pest treatment and the installation of a treated zone under a house especially the different quantities of pesticide applied.

We have had discussions for at least 6 months when NSW EPA informed us, they were going to bring a Termite Management Licence in NSW in 2022. I have, on behalf of the State Council, informed members of the pending new requirement on previous occasions in the AEPMA National newsletter.

Now for the important bits:

On 17 December 2021, amendments to the NSW Pesticides Regulation 2017 will commence that will progressively require all NSW pest management technicians treating timber pests such as termites to have completed units 8 and 10 as well as the core 5, 6 and 18 units. 

If you wish not to do termite work you can still do so with 5, 6 & 18

If you want to do termite work, you will need to show evidence that you have completed the 
units 8 & 10 as well.

If you have evidence of having completed 8 & 10, you do not require additional training.

You can apply for your new combined licence from end of January 2022 (I would give it some extra time just in case they are very busy). I have been advised that people will not be double charged for the combined licence.

People have asked me if they would need to retrain to the Newer Training Package.

My knowledge as a Trainer and Assessor, when people have their competencies, we can’t ask them to retrain under the newer Training package (unless they are involved in training and assessing. Then they must upgrade to the more recent qualification and assess people under the current Training Package).

Older equivalent versions of the competencies will be OK where people have had ongoing licences. Where people have had a substantive gap from holding a licence, the EPA will consider it on a case by case basis. The overall policy intention is to avoid disenfranchising people during the transition.

We will ask EPA what “substantive” means in the amount of years.

What happen if you can’t find your competency paperwork? 

The Regulation does put the onus on the applicant to be able to provide evidence of successfully obtaining their qualification and the E-Connect NSW online system does require this to process the application promptly. 

This matter has been raised with EPA and we will let you know when we have a response.

To treat timber pests, you will need to update your qualification once your current licence expires or by 17 December 2023, whichever comes later. 

This means if you held a pest management technician licence before 17 December 2021 you may have more time to update your qualifications.
People who obtain a pest management technician licence for the first time after 17 December 2021 can keep doing timber pest treatment work with that licence until 17 December 2023.

As I have previously advised, if you are doing termite work and are not qualified, get your competency units soon! I have done it and upgraded several times and it is not rocket science especially if you have work in the field for a long time.

The new licence type brings NSW into line with similar pest control licence and training requirements already in place in other states and territories. It will be simpler to work interstate under mutual recognition arrangements (coming in on 22 July 2022).

The most important factor being AMR (Automatic Mutual Recognition) would make the occupation more portable and ensure technicians who move frequently across borders are not hindered by red tape.   

I hope all this help!!

On another note:

I will be stepping down as NSW ACT State Council Chairman at the next meeting in February and will be replaced till the election in April/ May by Vice Chairperson Ms Kylee Enwright who I believe will do a fantastic job at it. Kylee is a Pest Manager, who runs her own business (CPR Pest Management Services) with husband Paul. She has won the National Award for Women in Pest Management in 2019 and is also a fully qualified Trainer and Assessor. 

I will remain on the State Council as a delegate and will offer my support to Kylee as required.

After 40 years in Pest Management, over 30 years working for the Pest Management Industry, 12 years as NSW ACT Chairman, my time has to be now for my wife, my kids and grand children.

It has been a privilege to serve the Pest Management Industry for that long journey and I recommend other people to do the same and put their hand up to get involved with AEPMA.

I have learnt so much on this journey and made many friends.

I also would like to thank Stephen Ware and all the present and previous staff at AEPMA National office, it has been so much of a pleasure to work with you for so many years!

If anyone would like to attend next meeting (date to be decided soon), just send me or the National office an email.

Patrick Legey for the AEPMA NSW ACT State Council Patrick@austrapest.com.au Phone: 0438 022984 or National office: 1 300 307114 or Email: info@aepma.com.au

Best wishes

Patrick Legey

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