Public consultation on the proposed amendments to the Building Maintenance and Strata Management Act

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Singapore, 25 September 2013 - The Building and Construction Authority (BCA) is inviting members of the public to give their feedback on the list of proposed amendments to be made to the Building Maintenance and Strata Management Act (BMSMA).

Over the past one year, BCA received over 2,000 responses on matters relating to BMSMA. Besides the first public consultation consisting of an online survey, face-to-face interviews, a Town Hall session and discussion with a Focus Group Review Panel1 , there were also written correspondence and emails sent to BCA.

BCA would like to thank the respondents for their suggestions. Based on the many different views and ideas, BCA has consolidated the feedback into a proposed list of amendments to achieve three broad objectives: 
. Better governance and transparency over how the strata development is run;
. Higher competency and professionalism of managing agents; and
. More clarity and understanding of rules.

The proposed amendments will enhance the self-governing framework by giving the management corporations (MCSTs) more empowerment to carry out their duties and responsibilities. This includes allowing the MCST to impose fines through by-laws when there is a breach on specific prescribed by-laws; widening the usage of management fund for events organised by MCST; and providing the MCST the option of paying honorarium to council members. While efforts are made to empower the MCST to self-govern the affairs of their estates, there is also a need to ensure a balance between the powers of the MCST and the rights of subsidiary proprietors (SPs). Hence, the proxy system will be tightened to limit the number of proxies a person could hold in a general meeting to prevent any single person from dominating the voting process. This will allow for a fairer decision-making process within the MCST.

In response to the industry's feedback on the need to raise the competency and professionalism of managing agents (MAs), the proposed amendments will also make it compulsory for all managers or managing agents to undergo specific trainings to beef up their knowledge and skills in providing advice to the MCST.

Additionally, the proposed amendments will seek to address the need for better clarity and understanding of rules. For instance, we will make clear the definition 'days' and 'working days'; to state the type of resolution required to be passed for the MCST to decide on certain undertakings; and specify that the developer shall transfer a positive amount of money to the MCST when they hand over the development.

The BMSMA is a legal framework that has been put in place since 2005 to guide and empower management corporations (MCST) to make decisions relating to the maintenance and management of their strata properties. The current review of the BMSMA is part of BCA's ongoing process of conducting regular reviews of its rules and regulations. It is also aimed at improving existing provisions in the BMSMA for better transparency and governance, as well as to provide greater clarity to existing provisions.

As the BMSMA impacts all strata property owners in Singapore, BCA is conducting this second public consultation to ensure that we hear from as many views as possible before the proposed legislative changes are finalised. All feedback can be submitted to BCA online, or via post, fax or email by 31 October 2013, 5pm. Details of the consultation paper and submission procedures can be accessed via BCA's website (http://www1.bca.gov.sg) and REACH's website (http://www.reach.gov.sg).

1The Review Panel comprised representatives from industry associations, developers, the legal profession, academics, managing agents, subsidiary proprietors and council members of MCSTs.

Portable document format version of the media release is also available (66KB .pdf)

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