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The Swimming Pool & Spa Association of Australia Ltd (SPASA Australia) has a new National President & Vice President and has consolidated its strategic priorities and goals.

SPASA WA President, Lynley Papineau, was unanimously elected as the inaugural SPASA Australia President and SPASA Victoria VP, Rob Kruber was elected national Vice President at the recent two day SPASA Australia Forum. SPASA A 111 800x532

As Executive Director of Aquatic Leisure Technologies, Lynley brings close to 20 years’ industry experience. She was is recipient of the Telstra Business Woman of the Year Award and was awarded the Centenary Medal by the Commonwealth of Australia.

Lynley also holds a Bachelor of Commerce, double majoring in Marketing and Public Relations and was invited onto the WA Building Commission, Building Act Working Committee.

“I feel honoured by this appointment and look forward to working with other Board members and SPASA Australia staff.” said Papineau. “Our industry faces some challenging times, rest assured your National Association is making significant inroads, ranging from our ongoing representations with Standards Australia,hosting the recent DRED stakeholder meeting with the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, our Constitution & governance review to finalising preparations for the National SPASA Victoria Awards of Excellence - much is going on.”

“Vice President Rob Kruber has been involved in the spa industry for 11 years and is currently the Operations Manager of Spa Industries & Just Spas Group. They are the clear market leaders,having significant manufacturing and retail strengths – I’m extremely impressed with Rob’s strategic and commercial skill-set. He’s served on the SPASA Victoria Board for the past 3 years and currently holds the position of Vice President.” Papineau added.

Newly elected Vice President, Kruber added,  “I’m excited about my appointment as VP of SPASA Australia and hope to be able to support Lynley and the dynamic board. Congratulations to recently-appointed National Manager, David Syme & CEO Brendan Watkins. We will deliver the highest level of national representation and promotion for our members and wider industry.”

“I’m personally delighted to see such capable industry high-flyers serving the national industry in this capacity.” said SPASA Australia CEO Brendan Watkins.

Allocation of National Portfolios

In another proactive step, the SPASA Australia Board has created four key National Portfolios. This initiative will assist in maintaining focus and determining resource allocation to address the national issues occurring simultaneously across the nation.

Each SPASA Australia Director has been appointed to oversee a core Portfolio.                                                                 

When required, the respective Board Member can engage Member

Involvement through Sub-Committees. The appointments are:

1.      Finance/Treasurer Portfolio – David Hutton (SPASA Victoria SA)

2.      National Training/Education Portfolio – Lynley Papineau (SPASA WA)

3.       Communications& Promotion Portfolio – Andrew Jakovac (SPASA Victoria QLD)

4.       Federal Representation Portfolio – Rob Kruber (SPASA Victoria VIC)

Updating Governance and Procedural Documentation

The cornerstone of good governance is both current and transparent policy development, coupled with Constitutional rigour. Further evidence of SPASA Australia’s progression is ongoing policy development. Many elements have already been put in place, additional policy development identified at theForum is being drafted now.

This resource investment is not only critical to the National Peak Body but can be utilised by the state associations to improve their own governance strength.

SPASA Australia Awards of Excellence

The coming 2013 SPASA Australia Awards of Excellence has been expanded,both by way of categories and also by participation. Finalists will again bedrawn from category winners of the SPASA Victoria QLD, SPASA SA, SPASA Victoria VIC & SPASA WA Awards of Excellence.

In response to ever-increasing demand, it’s anticipated that SPASA Australia will be holding a major Awards of Excellence Gala Dinner in 2014. This major event will coincide with what will be a fully inclusive 2014 National Awards of Excellence program. The scope and level of expertise on display will be unprecedented - this showcase of national expertise will become the most sought-after and prestigious recognition available to industry participants ever in Australia.

By raising the bar, such an event will draw both new memberships and participation levels – not to mention sponsors and enormous media coverage. Initial enquiries can be directed to SPASA Australia CEO, Brendan Watkins.

Standards Australia  & Federal Bodies

One of the more important aspects of a National Peak Body, which is often the least understood, is its involvement with standards, national codes and other regulatory bodies. This time-consuming aspect of the member services we deliver has significant ramifications to industry.

No national association can address this function in isolation. It can only occur through the willingness of its Members to free-up company staff resources to not only “share the load” but more importantly, provide invaluable industry-unique experience to the various Committees and submissions.

For several decades the member states of SPASA Australia have provided federal representation and committee members, this has traditionally been done with little fanfare. Solving member issues as they arise - it is nothing new.

With a second commentator now intervening on national, and apparently now state issues, our regulators are being asked to deal with a confusing blend of views. This needlessly dilutes the value of member dollars and damages the reputation of our industry.

To fully complement National Member contributions, SPASA Australia recently appointed David Syme to the National Manager role. David’s technical background, engineering qualifications and most importantly his unique experience with accreditation and standards, sets him apart from any counterparts.

One of the first tasks he achieved was reengagement with Standards Australia to conduct a Standards Committee review of our industry involvement.Each Committee is responsible for the review and recommended updates to numerous standards that impact our cross section of Members. Our involvement in the active Committees include:







Safety of Private Swimming Pools


Swimming pool safety - Safety barriers for swimming pools - specifies requirements for the design, construction and performance of fences, gates, retaining walls, windows, door sets and balconies intended to form a barrier that will restrict the access of young children to swimming pools

These key industry Standards are also affected by National Construction Code (NCC).


Swimming pool safety - Location of safety barriers for swimming pools - sets out options for the location of safety barriers intended to restrict the access of young children to swimming pools


Swimming pool safety - Water recirculation systems - outlines requirements for skimmers boxes, and other permanent water outlets in swimming pools


Remote Demand Management of Electrical Products


Demand response capabilities and supporting technologies for electrical products - Interaction of demand response enabling devices and electrical products - Operational instructions and connections for devices controlling swimming pool pump-units

Standard to control the flow of electricity to pool pumps via the pool unit control during high demand periods.


Energy Efficiency for Swimming Pool Pumps


Performance of household electrical appliances -Swimming pool pump-units - Energy consumption and performance

Energy star rating standard for multi and variable speed energy efficient pumps.


Performance of household electrical appliances -Swimming pool pump-units - Energy labelling and minimum energy performance standard requirements

Standard for the testing and labelling requirements for multi and variable speed energy efficient pumps.

Standards Australia is currently reviewing all standards that are older than 10 years to identify if they require review or become obsolete. Therefore a number of inactive Committees are being reactivated over the next year. SPASA Australia is working closely with Standards Australia to monitor this situation. Inactive Committees that affect Members include:




Concrete Structures Retaining Liquids


Low Emission Resins


Swimming Pool Covers


Spa Pools


Water Quality - Pools


Swimming Pool Contracts


Water Safety Signs and Symbols


Hydrotherapy Pools


Glass Reinforced Swimming Pools


In addition to Australian Standards there are other key documents and Committees that impact our industry, where SPASA Australia is engaging:

·        National Construction Code (NCC) amendments;

·        Code of Practice for Chemical of Security Concern; and

·        APVMA Registration of Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals into the Australian marketplace.

Any members with enquiries about the national position relative to standards should contact David Syme directly.


Certificate III in Swimming Pool & Spa Service & Certificate IV in Swimming Pool &Spa Service: SPASA Australia is working closely with a Queensland based RTO, Traxion Training, in applying for government funded training subsidies.

These funds will support learning programs for our membership and the wider industry. Members have recently been requested to complete a brief online survey to support this facility.

These national qualifications have ostensibly come about through the proactive work of SPRAA, a significant achievement. Whilst these are new qualifications, they may one day become a mandatory requirement of the industry as regulations are made more robust and consumers are protected from those without nationally recognised and certified skills.

For those wishing to grow their business in the new financial year, we’re keen to develop a pool industry focused and flexibly delivered program that will assist enhance skill levels in core business development areas such as: Sales / Marketing / Cashflow Management / HR / WHS etc.

An externally researched White Paper has been commissioned,and has recently been delivered, regarding training options – for members in areas of employment - across the nation. More will be reported on this incoming updates.

The national body strives to learn the lessons of history and has no intention of becoming an RTO. Recent industry experience has underlined that the lack of industry size greatly restricts commercial viability - partnering with an RTO is the preferred way forward.

National Member Engagement

Involvement in industry forums can obviously assist with understanding Member need.However, no corporate gathering can replace one-on-one interaction with National Members on their own turf. Hence,  a part of David’s brief is to visit each National Member over the next 12 months to better understand unique issues.

As part of the first round of visits, David would also welcome opportunities to visit the manufacturing facilities of National Members to better understand the processes involved to created finished product from the raw material. This insight will better prepare David when examining changes to standards,representing the industry on Committees and collating Member responses in preparing submissions.  

Finalisation of the National Website

The SPASA Australia Website is nearing completion. In a strategically significant move each of the four members, SPASA Victoria QLD, SPASA SA, SPASA Victoria VIC and SPASA WA are moving towards a common SPASA Victoria domain.

By integrating the state and national websites through a single domain it will enhance enormously the branding power of both our collective voice and reputation, and will add member benefit in reducing the duplication of common consumer materials.

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Closing Remarks

A National Peak Body is only as strong as the support and involvement of its Members. SPASA Australia is thankful for the trust you have given and looks forward to increasing the value of its Membership via the delivery of meaningful member services.

For Further Information:

David Syme, National Manager  M: 0499 880 023 or Brendan Watkins, CEO  P: 03 9501 2040