§ Sir J. Langford-Holt
asked the Secretary of State for Employment and Productivity whether she will make a statement on the costs of the Road Transport Training Scheme; what is the trend of these costs and the results obtained; what representations she has had about the effect of the Training Board levy on small undertakings; and whether she will now make participation in the scheme voluntary.
§ Mr. Harold Walker
The Road Transport Industry Training Board expects to spend approximately £17 million on training grants in the next training year. This is an increase over current expenditure and reflects the continued growth expected in claims from employers for grants in respect of the training they are undertaking. My right hon. Friend has received representations from associations of employers on a number of points about the Board's latest levy scheme. The provisions for assessing smaller firms at lower rates of levy than the standard rate have been generally accepted. There is no intention of changing the statutory basis of the levy.