UK’s largest house builders vote 10 to 1 against CITB levy

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The country’s house builders have returned a resoundingly negative response in the vote on whether the industry has confidence in the CITB, the body which collects a Levy on construction companies to help fund skills and training courses for their employees

In terms of Levy paid, 89% voted against CITB continuing as the lead body for construction training the vote from home builders is one of ‘no confidence’.

With house builders facing a major skills challenge to meet the capacity requirements to achieve the Government’s ambitious housing delivery plans, these frustrations and little sign of the change from CITB home builders require has produced the result confirmed today. In addition, the introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy means that many home builders are effectively being taxed twice for skills provision.

CITB’s current proposals to focus more narrowly on “core construction” skills, meaning that while home builders will pay levy in respect of their whole workforce they risk being able to obtain support for a smaller proportion of their workers than they do now.

With the wider construction industry likely voting for CITB to continue, home builders are now keen to work with CITB to drive the truly radical change needed within the organisation to address the concerns the vote has exposed, and help to enable house builders to access the training requirements they need to tackle the country’s housing crisis.

Speaking in advance of this week’s Home Building Skills Pledge’s official launch, Stewart Baseley, executive chairman of the Home Builders Federation said:

“The vote demonstrates the frustrations house builders feel with CITB and the training regime currently in place. The industry simply does not feel that CITB is providing the support and framework it needs to train its staff despite the huge amounts being paid in levy by home builders.

“House builders desperately need a training body focussed on its requirements with which it can work closely to develop training regimes that are easily accessible to companies large and small. We hope this will be the wake-up call CITB needs to drive root and branch change through its entire organisation.

“If we are to develop the capacity to build the high quality homes the country desperately needs, the industry must recruit and train more people. The launch of our Home Building Skills Pledge is a clear demonstration of the industry’s commitment to investing in its training needs now and in the future.