Aldous Bill 2nd Reading moved to October – but half a million businesses and 25% of MPs support

Aldous Bill, Peter Aldous, David Frise
Peter Aldous MP (right) meets David Frise, BESA chief executive

The Second Reading of the Aldous Bill has been moved from June to 26th October 2018, but support continues to grow.

The addition of the AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians) and British Chambers of Commerce bring over 575,000 businesses behind the proposed changes to retentions. More than one in four MPs now supports the Bill.

The Bill seeks to end payments being withheld for unreasonable lengths of time and end the risk of losing retentions via contractor bankruptcy. Conservative MP Peter Aldous introduced a Private Members Bill to put retentions in secure deposit schemes six days before the collapse of Carillion.

Peter Aldous MP said: “To have a body from the finance and accounting world on board is great. It confirms the economic value Retention Deposit Schemes would have, the benefit it would lead to for thousands of small businesses and the clear industry appetite for reform. I am very pleased to welcome them as the 80th organisation to back my Bill.”

Mark Farrar, AAT Chief Executive comments: “AAT is very pleased to support this much needed and long overdue campaign. Retentions seriously impact on the productivity of SMEs and in some cases their viability. They also serve to increase the overall cost of construction.

“Billions of pounds of SME cash is tied up in retentions that are held for unreasonable amounts of time. That is money which could be better put to use helping SMEs survive, grow and succeed.”

ECA deputy director of Business Policy & Practice, Rob Driscoll, adds: “We are delighted to have one of the UK’s leading accountancy bodies now supporting urgent reform of retentions in construction. The coalition backing reform of payment and retentions has reached unprecedented levels and is without question the real voice of the industry. We urge Government to seize the day and take steps to guarantee reform in the construction industry - a key engine of growth - within this parliament and the long awaited Sector Deal.”

Alexi Ozioro, BESA public affairs and policy manager says: “Support for the Bill is overwhelming and adding a respected accounting body such as AAT is very telling of the need for change. With the number of cross-party MPs supporting the Aldous Bill, and a clear majority of specialist contractors on board, it is a sign reform is not only needed, but is inevitable.”

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