CITB-ConstructionSkills has learned that some contractors are passing on their own levy payments to smaller subcontractors, including labour-only subcontractors. The sector skills council and industry training board for construction industry has joined forces with 10 leading industry trade associations to seek an end to what it sees as sharp practice.
Some employers are labelling the charges: ‘deduction for CITB levy’ or ‘amounts in respect of CITB levy’. In some cases, contractors have sought to make a profit in this way by setting the deductions at higher rates than the actual CITB-ConstructionSkills levy.
CITB-ConstructionSkills chief executive Mark Farrar said: “CITB-ConstructionSkills is the body appointed by parliament to raise and collect the Industrial Training Levy from employers in the construction industry under the Industrial Training Act. The Act does not give authorisation for employers to make deductions from any amounts paid to a labour-only subcontractor or other worker.
“If your employer is making these types of deductions without your consent, you may wish to seek independent legal advice. CITB-ConstructionSkills is working to deliver the right skills for economic growth locally and nationally and the levy we collect provides the funds to help employers up-skill their workforce and make their businesses succeed and grow,” he added.
The levy money raised is used to provide training grants and other benefits which help employers train their staff and develop their businesses. Last year, 19,058 employers benefitted from £113m of grant funding.
Trade associations backing the call for employers to stop passing on the levy are: Federation of Master Builders (FMB), UK Contractors Group (UKCG), National Specialist Contractors Council (NSCC), Scottish Decorators Federation (SDF), Home Builders Federation (HBF), National Association of Shopfitters (NAS), British Woodworking Federation (BWF), Construction Plant-hire Association (CPA), National Federation of Demolition Contractors (NFDC) and the National Federation of Builders (NFB).