CITB suspends industry levy collection for three months

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levy collection,
© Alisa Bunina

CITB will suspend its levy collection payment due in 2020 for an initial period of three months, to provide financial relief for those in the construction industry

CITB’s board met yesterday (25 March) and gave final approval to suspend its levy collection for payment in 2020, for an initial period of three months.

The levy bills will subsequently be issued for the full year. The delay will provide immediate financial relief to construction employers during the coronavirus crisis.

In normal times CITB assesses and sends out levy collection bills each April in accordance with legal requirements. CITB levy bills are usually due for payment in May, but CITB will not seek collection on the suspended bills until August, or later if possible.

Financial relief

Sarah Beale, CITB chief executive, said: “Everyone in construction is facing extreme pressure at the moment and it’s right that we provide the financial relief we can to protect employers and ensure that the industry is as prepared as possible for the economic recovery that will come when the crisis lifts.

“CITB is reviewing all of its work to respond to the rapidly changing skills needs of industry. We are continuing to re-evaluate our services, funding and grants to adapt them to meet industry’s changing priority needs.”

CITB will provide employers with further detail as soon as it can. We understood the need to provide early information, even before all details are available.

Cash-flow boost

Earlier this week, Hudson Contract urged the government to suspend CITB’s levy-raising powers to give an immediate cash-flow boost to the construction industry.

The company said the move would relieve a significant burden on SMEs during a time of crisis and be cost-neutral to the exchequer.

Ian Anfield, managing director, commented: “Last year, the quango raised £135m from 62,000 micro, small and medium-sized employers to fund itself and its bizarre choice of obscure schemes.

“Given the extraordinary challenges facing the industry, the government should order an immediate halt to payments into the scheme.

“Such a move would be welcomed by the majority of our 2,200 clients who see CITB as a wasteful organisation that spends huge amounts of money on questionable activities and initiatives that will be suspended anyway.”

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