National Infrastructure Commission consultation

The government is continuing its work on establishing the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC), publishing a consultation on its formal structure, ambit and legislative footing.

The consultation seeks views to inform legislation establishing the NIC permanently. It invites views from all interested parties, specifically mentioning "regulators, industry experts, lawyers and investors".

Practitioners will note the way in which the consultation responds to criticism that infrastructure should be planned more carefully, rather than being a party political issue. The introduction states:

"In spite of recent improvements there is still no overarching and independent process for assessing the long-term infrastructure needs of the nation. A lack of consensus on the need for specific projects has slowed down delivery... meaning that the full economic and welfare gains potentially deriving from infrastructure investments are often not fully realised or understood."

The consultation closes on 17 March 2016.

Draft regulations relaxing CIS compliance test

On 9 December 2015, HMRC published for consultation draft regulations relaxing the compliance test for a sub-contractor to be permitted to receive payments gross under the construction industry scheme (CIS).

Under the draft legislation, the test will be narrowed to require only timely:

  • Submission of monthly CIS returns
  • Submission of self-assessment returns
  • Remission of all CIS and PAYE deductions

The consultation ended on 22 January 2016. The draft regulations are to come into force on 6 April 2016 and are part of a welcome package of measures to improve the operation, and reduce the compliance burden, of the CIS.

CIOB publishes Time and Cost Management Contract, 2015 edition

The Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) published its Time and Cost Management Contract, 2015 edition (TCM15) at the end of last year.  It is a revised edition of its Contract for use with Complex Projects, published in 2013 (CPC 2013). The change in name is intended to reflect more clearly the core strengths of this contract.

The CIOB states that TCM15 is a collaborative contract requiring the contractor, its sub-contractors and design consultants to work with the time manager, cost manager, contract administrator and the employer to constantly appraise risk and confer in taking action to overcome and avoid unnecessary consequences of time and cost risks.

The other contracts in the suite are a sub-contract agreement, together with conditions of contract and appendices, and a consultancy appointment together with specific schedules (relating to the scope of services and the fee) that should be used for the appointment of the time manager and the contract administrator.