Member Since: 18th Mar 2002
I’m a specialist in Payroll systems with over 25 years’ experience, and am a Chartered Member of the CIPP. I concentrate on the legislative aspects of payroll processing in the UK, Ireland, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands.
Legislation Manager MHR
21st Feb 2020
"when the power cuts start"
Yeah, the push to electric vehicles seems to ignore a couple of things. Firstly, we can't generate enough electricity to support an all-electric vehicle fleet on current battery and motor technologies. And secondly, the electricity distribution network (the wires above and below ground) can't carry enough power to cope with everyone charging an electric car every night. Huge investment in upgrades is needed, but nothing seems to be in the pipeline.
21st Feb 2020
I guess the water figure relates to that consumed by the animals, not the humans. Even so, it seems a lot and as you say, the figure of 15 million animals is just nonsense. And the animals aren't 'saved', they'd simply never exist.
29th Nov 2019
Fixed-price "eat as much as you like" buffets provide a particular opportunity. Years ago, I used to visit one which had a fixed price including soft drinks on certain days. Payment was by cash only and often you didn't even get a handwritten receipt unless you purchased extras such as alcohol, since the bill was always a fixed amount otherwise. The place is long-gone now (pity, the food was good!), but I bet it was a good source of tax-free cash for its owners.
22nd Feb 2019
The consultation is specifically about the issues described in the article, not the wider implications of NMW/NLW. The government believes the broader impacts can be analysed using information on the nature of the workforce gathered separately, for instance by the Office for National Statistics.
Two of the issues, salaried workers payment frequency and salary sacrifice, seem to be to be areas where change is overdue.
The stipulation that to be considered 'salaried' you have to be paid either weekly or monthly is particularly odd. It's hard to see why payment frequencies between those extremes shouldn't be allowed. Indeed, it's quite possible that the current situation is an unintended consequence of the way the Regulations were drafted.
In the case of salary sacrifice the current rules work against the interests of the lowest paid, who can't take advantage of the NI savings from, say, a pension salary sacrifice in the way that higher paid colleagues can. This also means their employers miss out on this benefit.
It will be interesting to see what change, if anything, comes out of the consultation process.
10th Jan 2019
Maybe the difference between this saving scheme and pension deductions is that the savings scheme money never leaves the control of the employer, while the pension money does. In any case, deductions required under auto-enrolment would presumably be covered by the exception for deductions required by legislation.
2nd Jan 2019
The issue of the "Christmas club" is intriguing, and any legal challenge will presumably hinge on whether these amounts are 'for the benefit of the employer' or not. HMRC seem to be saying that they are, because they go into a company bank account, while Iceland contend that they're not, given that the employees don't have to participate and can access the money at will.
The legislation around this is deliberately tight, in order to prevent unscrupulous employers nominally paying minimum wage but then imposing mandatory charges for processing payroll, heating the building, breathing company air or similar, in order to claw some of the money back.
The argument is basically about how far this prohibition on the company getting some of their employees' pay back extends.
21st Nov 2018
The plan is certainly to remove the LEL, not the trigger. However this would itself cause issues because employees earning close to the trigger value, who currently contribute very little, would see a proportionately large increase in contributions. For example from next year someone earning £10,500 will pay £218 in contributions on pay in excess of the LEL. If contributions were on all their pay this would rise to £525. Employers would also see an increase, albeit a smaller one since their contribution rate is lower.
2nd Aug 2018
Yes, we do seem to be getting threats that we'll be treated less favourably than all the other non-EU countries. Take air travel. The European air traffic control system deals perfectly well with all the flights between the EU and every other non-EU country in the world. However it's reported that we're being threatened that we might be ostracised and no air traffic into or out of the UK will be allowed after Brexit (as it's pretty well impossible to get anywhere from the UK without entering EU-controlled airspace).
2nd Aug 2018
Yes, but wouldn't it be a sad indictment of our political leaders if the only way to obtain a German car was to ship it from China or the US because we weren't allowed to get it direct from Germany. People voted (or at least thought they were voting) to leave the EU, not to stop trading with Europe.
1st Aug 2018
All the uncertainty is leading to a lot of scare stories, which may or may not be based in reality. The trouble is, individually they all sound plausible and hardly anyone is saying with authority that any of them definitely won't happen, so they continue to gain traction.
If you believe them all, Brexit could cause food and fuel rationing, the armed forces on the streets delivering what little food there is, the unavailability of medicines, the end of air traffic into and out of the UK, a queue of lorries half way from Dover to London and loads more besides, up to and including a breakdown of government and the introduction of martial law.
Now, I can't imagine that all (or even most) of this will actually happen, but the dithering and indecisiveness we see from the government provides a fertile breeding ground for such "year zero" theories.
Someone needs to get a grip, and soon. Whatever your thoughts on whether Brexit itself is a good or bad thing, it's certain that no-one voted for ration books and the sick going without medicines! If the government allows Brexit to be too painful, people will rebel at the next election. Labour government, anyone?