Trade bodies reveal CITB tax votes as Build UK urges ‘fundamental’ change


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Build UK, the largest trade body to vote on the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) fee package, has supported the organization’s proposals but called for them to be improved. A survey last year on whether the industry supports collecting the tax was delayed for the next three years because of the pandemic. It is meant to be held every three years to show acceptance of the industry in order to obtain permission from the government to collect it. The organization proposed keeping tax rates unchanged at 0.35 percent of company payroll and 1.25 percent of payments to qualified CIS subcontractors. It has also proposed keeping the tax exemption for employers whose wage bill is less than £120,000 and a 50 per cent reduction for employers whose wage bill is between £120,000 and £400,000. About 14 different business bodies, known as “designated organizations” in the process, cast their votes after consulting their members, as does a sample of 4,000 unrepresented businesses. In a statement announcing its decision, Build UK said it had a response rate of 100 per cent from members and that support for the CITB tax had fallen since the last vote. “The level of support during this consensus process has been much lower than in previous years, and there remains widespread frustration with CITB’s performance,” she said. “Build UK is clear that construction needs an industry training board that is fit for purpose, responsive and effective in providing the services and support required to meet the skills needs of the industry, and that members are not willing to wait another three years to see fundamental changes in CITB delivery in order to fulfill this role.” Both the National Federation of Demolition Contractors (NFDC) and the National Association of Automobile Dealers and Inland Contractors (NAS) said their members supported the proposals, with 60 percent of NAS members voting in favour. And the FIS is not supporting the proposal for the second time in a row, due to the lack of revenue its members feel to get from paying taxes. FIS chief executive Ian McElwee said members were frustrated with the organization’s performance and that, although members regained “Almost 20 percent” in 2019/20 more than in previous years, “a large proportion of the tax collected is [still] It is not used or supported by those who pay it.” He said the vote was closer than it was in 2017, which he said reflected a “significant increase in the participation of FIS members in training and qualifications.” The deadline for voting was August 15. Steve Radley said, CITB Policy Director: “CITB would like to thank all of the specific employers and organizations that participated in this year’s consensus process. The data is currently being compiled and the result is expected to be ready to be reported to industry and government in mid-September and we will work with all organizations that have been involved in addressing the issues they have raised.”


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