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BCSA enters Primary Authority Agreement

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L-R: Steve Rock, Head of Trading Standards, Environment, Planning and Enforcement, Kent County Council: Ivor Roberts, Managing Director, Nusteel Structures; Sarah McCann-Bartlett, Director General BCSA; Michael Hill, Cabinet Member for Community Services, Kent County Council; Jason Reilly, CE Compliance Manager, Nusteel Structures

The British Constructional Steelwork Association (BCSA) has gained a direct partnership with Trading Standards Service via the primary authority route.

Working with Kent County Council’s (KCC) trading standards, the BCSA will now be able to seek clarification on the requirements of BS EN 1090 and CE Marking.

The advice will then be passed on to the entire BCSA membership, while KCC will act as a focal point for all other local authorities meaning the supplied information has a national relevance.

“Provided our members follow the advice, we don’t need to worry about responding to conflicting advice or even facing enforcement action from another local authority that has a different interpretation of the law,” said BCSA Director of Engineering Dr David Moore.

What is a primary authority?

  • A primary authority is a statutory scheme, established by the Regulatory Enforcement and Sanctions Act 2008, that offers businesses operating across council boundaries the opportunity to be regulated in a new way.
  • It enables a business to form a legally-recognised partnership with a single local authority. The primary authority can provide the business with regulatory advice, which other local authorities will take into account in their dealings with that business.
  • A primary authority is also able to guide the way that other local authorities carry out checks, such as inspections, by developing inspection plans that should be followed nationally.
  • The process was introduced by the government in 2009 to address concerns raised by businesses about how they are regulated by local authorities in areas such as environmental health, licensing and trading standards legislation.
  • The government is committed to developing primary authority and sees the scheme as playing a key role in its work to improve the way that regulations are enforced.
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