CITB notes calls for change as it survives vote on levy rate proposal

Ian Hughes
Ian Hughes

The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB)’s proposed levy rate has been backed by four out of five of Scotland’s construction employers – alongside calls for reform.

While members of the Scottish Building Federation (SBF) and the Scottish Decorators’ Federation (SDF) both voted overwhelmingly to reject the proposals, the vote showed strong support for CITB’s continued levy-raising powers, across employers of all sizes in Scotland, England and Wales.

This comes at the end of the CITB’s triennial Consensus process, during which 14 federations and 4,000 non-federation represented employers were asked whether or not they support the proposed levy rate.

More than two thirds of SBF members responding to the SBF consultation voted against CITB’s proposition whilst 89% of responding SDF members also rejected the offering.

The Federation of Master Builders (FMB) announced its qualified support for the CITB but called on the training body to better recognise Scotland’s “high-quality” construction apprenticeships.

Following CITB’s biggest-ever consultation with industry, the proposed levy rate for this year was set at 0.35% for all PAYE employers, down from 0.5% in previous years. The subcontractor NET CIS rate remains at 1.25%.

Final results from the independent employer survey show that in Scotland, 79.1% of employers surveyed support the Levy, which compares favourably with England, at 71.2%.

Across the three nations, 10 out of the 14 federations voted in favour of the levy. Meanwhile, 72.4% of employers supported the levy and 66.1% supported the revised levy rates.

The survey also revealed that the majority of firms of all sizes in the UK support the levy - 74.2% of large and medium firms, 75.9% of small firms and 71.6% of micro firms all voted in favour.

Ian Hughes, partnerships director for CITB Scotland, said: “The Consensus process this year has been rigorous, robust and inclusive. The results are clear – construction firms across Scotland see the need for a modern training organisation and it’s very encouraging to see that we have the continued support of the industry for the next three years – with more employers consulted than ever before.”

Sarah Beale, chief executive of CITB, added: “While CITB - both in Scotland and in the rest of the UK - has been broadly supported by our industry, we recognise its calls for radical change. Be assured that we are listening to feedback from all sectors and will use it, along with recommendations from the UK government’s upcoming review into industry training boards, to directly inform the next stage of our reform process.

“We are completely committed to modernising our organisation by renewing governance, ensuring accountability and improving outcomes. It is what industry expects and we will deliver.”


% Support for Levy Proposal by Volume

  Yes No Don’t Know
Overall 72.4 21.1 6.5
Large &Medium 74.2 12.9 12.9
Small 75.9 16.8 7.3
Micro 71.6 22.5 5.8
England 71.2 22.0 6.8
Scotland 79.1 15.1 5.8
Wales 79.2 16.3 4.5


% Support for Levy Proposal by Value

Yes No Don’t Know
Overall 66.1 24.1 9.8
Large &Medium 71.8 15.6 12.6
Small 66.9 21.9 11.2
Micro 57.2 34.9 7.8
England 65.1 24.3 10.6
Scotland 68.3 26.3 5.4
Wales 81.0 16.5 2.6


Prescribed Organisations support for Levy Proposal (i.e. Consensus Federations) as at 02 Oct 2017

Name Response
Build UK YES
British Woodworking Federation (BWF) YES
Civil Engineering Contractors Association (CECA) YES
Construction Plant-hire Association (CPA) YES
Federation of Master Builders (FMB) YES
Finishes and Interiors Sector (FIS) NO
Hire Association Europe YES
Home Builders Federation (HBF) NO
National Association of Shopfitters (NAS) YES
National Federation of Builders (NFB) YES
National Federation of Demolition Contractors (NFDC) YES
Scottish Building Federation (SBF) NO
Scottish Decorators Federation (SDF) NO
Scottish Plant Owners Association (SPOA) YES

The results will now be submitted to the Department for Education for verification and approval before the Secretary of State asks Parliament to approve the new Levy order.

Tags: CITB

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