THE ACT Government has announced it will increase the employer paid levy to fund portable Long Service Leave Scheme for workers in building and construction industries.
From October 1, the employer levy will increase from 1.75 per cent to 2.5 per cent.
Minister for Workplace Safety and Industrial Relations Simon Corbell says the decision to increase the levy “was not taken lightly” and was based on independent actuarial advice.
“It’s important to increase the employer paid levy to ensure that the Long Service Leave Scheme can cope with demand in the event of a downturn in construction activity in Canberra, when more workers may need to access their entitlements,” Mr Corbell says.
“This in turn will protect the long term viability of the local industry, by allowing skilled workers to remain in Canberra supporting our city’s economy, rather than seeking work outside of the Territory.”
Mr Corbell said that while the increase in the levy may result in a flow on cost to consumers, it “should be minimal.”
“When the impact of the levy increase is spread across all of the projects of a construction company, the cost increase per project will be minor,” he said.
“There are 1600 employers registered in the portable Long Service Leave Scheme – 900 of those companies employ four or less workers. The average cost of the increased levy to them will be about $40 a fortnight per employee.”
The Long Service Leave (Portable Schemes) Act 2009 allows eligible workers to move from employer to employer without losing their Long Service Leave entitlements. Long service leave entitlements are based on recorded service with the ACT Long Service Leave Authority, rather than with an individual employer.