New swimming pool safety conditions deadline delayed

Illawarra swimming pool owners have been given more time to meet new government safety conditions, after pressure from under-resourced councils and real estate agents forced the government to extend its April 29 deadline.

The new rules, dictating that people intending to sell, lease or rent their property have a swimming pool barrier certificate of compliance included in their contract of sale, will now come into force on at the end of April next year.

The much touted pool safety improvements have faced several delays over the past two years, after NSW Local Government Minister Don Page announced the regulations in 2012.

Opposition spokeswoman for local government Sophie Cotsis called the scheme ‘‘a fiasco from start to finish’’, and said the latest deferral could mean further risks of young children accessing backyard pools that are not properly fenced and are unsafe.’’

‘‘The Government has completely failed to resource councils to undertake the compliance and enforcement needed to make mandatory inspections work,’’ she said.

When the laws do come in, home owners could face a $220 fine and a maximum $2200 fine if the matter goes to court if they don’t register their pool with their local council.

To check if a pool already has a certificate of compliance, residents can go to the swimming pools register, which is still open to register existing pools and pools built in the future, here.