Leaders of the UK’s major construction trade bodies have said that confirmation that the CITB levy will continue must act as the green light for reforms demanded by industry.
CITB confirmed the successful conclusion of its consensus process, by which it asks industry to endorse payment of the levy for a further three years, with more than twice as many contractors favouring retaining the levy rather than removing it.
The news has been welcomed by industry associations. The Civil Engineering Contractors Association, Federation of Master Builders, Hire Association Europe, National Federation of Builders, and National Federation of Demolition Contractors said that that the consensus confirmation would provide greater certainty for industry about the outlook for training funding.
However the federations reinforced a clear message from members that, while industry had given CITB its support, it expects that this will be followed by prompt action by CITB to reform. In particular, contractors are looking for a refreshed approach to governance that reflects the industry as a whole and its complex supply chain, and for greater certainty about the future of grant funded training and a simpler approach to funding applications. Representatives of SMEs and the hire and rental industries both called for their sectors to be better served, with easier access to funding for training, and a simpler grants system key demands. The FMB has also called for much better representation of SME contractors within the governance framework of CITB.
“Nationally, there remains confusion about having both the CITB Levy and an Apprenticeship Levy,” declares Hire Association Europe Managing Director, Graham Arundell. “We want government and CITB to work together so levy-payers have greater clarity about the respective funds and their allocation,”