CITB Levy approved by Construction Industry Members for 2022-2025, but support has failed

The CITB levy is designed to support employers across the construction sector to make sure that the kind of workforce the industry needs to evolve will be available. It is focused on ensuring that the industry as a whole has the right skills necessary for conditions now, as well as those that are likely to arise further down the line. Levy-paying employers have voted to agree the proposals that have been put forward for 2022-25 but the level of support has fallen since the last time a vote was carried out.

CITB Levy Strategic priorities

The CITB has the power to impose a levy on all employers across the construction industry where construction activities take up more than half of employees’ time. The levy is based on the total wage bill that employers pay and there are some exemptions and reductions available for smaller businesses. The purpose of the levy is to support three key strategic priorities that will help to create a workforce that is skilled and experience in a way that helps the industry to evolve. These strategic priorities are: careers, standards and qualifications, and training and development.

The CITB new levy proposals have passed

The levy proposals for 2022 – 2025 involve the levy continuing at 0.35% for PAYE and 1.25% for net paid (taxable) CIS subcontractors. These proposals have passed, with 66% of the total number of levy-paying employers agreeing to them. However, this is a statistic that has fallen since the last vote on the CITB. In 2017, 77% of levy-paying employers voted on the proposals, indicating a fairly significant drop in support.

A lack of support – the breakdown

The information about support for levy proposals comes from a survey of 4,000 employers who are not members of prescribed organisations as well as 14 prescribed organisations themselves (these are the trade bodies that represent employers across the construction sector). Notably, there were three prescribed organisations that didn’t support the latest levy proposals: Finishes and Interiors Sector (FIS), Hire Association Europe (HAE) and Home Builders Federation (HBF). In England, only 56% of construction employers put their weight behind these latest levy proposals and 42% actively disagreed. The figures for Scotland were 73% agree and 25% actively disagree and for Wales 68% agree and 29% actively disagree. The rest were undecided.

Using the levy to support the future of the industry

Despite the fact that support has dropped for the CITB levy, the organisation itself remains positive. The CITB Chair noted how the levy was frozen last year, in a move designed to support employers, and that the current levy would be used to help provide financial and practical support for the training needs of individuals across the industry and handling the requirements for long-term skills development.

The CITB levy has proved somewhat controversial with the number of those backing the 2022-2025 proposals falling in comparison to the support received in 2017. Nevertheless, majority support is still there and the levy can continue to be an important resource for shaping the industry of the future.

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