National Minimum Wage rates increase today and other issues.

By | October 1, 2015

JG & Partners

National Minimum Wage rates increase today

Posted: 30 Sep 2015 05:00 PM PDT

A reminder that National Minimum Wage (NMW) rates increase today.

The main increases are as follows:

  • a 20p (3%) increase in the adult rate (from £6.50 to £6.70 per hour)
  • a 17p (3%) increase in the rate for 18 to 20 year olds (from £5.13 to £5.30 per hour)
  • an 8p (2%) increase in the rate for 16 to 17 year olds (from £3.79 to £3.87 per hour)

The NMW rate for apprentices increase by 57p (20%) from £2.73 to £3.30 per hour.

From April 2016, the government will introduce a new mandatory National Living Wage (NLW) for workers aged 25 and above, initially set at £7.20 – a further rise of 50p relative to the new NMW rate.

The combined effect of these increases will equate to a £1,200 per annum increase in earnings for a full-time worker or the current NMW.

England – Carrier Bag Charge goes live 5 October

Posted: 30 Sep 2015 05:00 PM PDT

A reminder that a 5p charge will come into effect on single use carrier bags in England next Monday.

The charge, which will be paid by customers, follows the introduction of similar levies in other parts of the UK. The purpose of the single use carrier bag charge is to reduce the number of bags given out, increase their re-use and reduce litter.

Notable differences between the charge in England and other parts of the UK include the following:

  • Small and medium-sized enterprises (retailers employing less than 250 staff) are exempt from applying the charge.
  • Paper bags are exempt from the charge.
  • Further, the following types of bag are also exempt:
  • bags for life
  • bags without handles
  • woven plastic bags
  • bags intended solely for unwrapped food
  • bags intended solely for unwrapped goods contaminated with soil (e.g. loose seeds)
  • bags intended for unwrapped blades
  • bags intended for prescription-only medicines
  • bags intended to hold live aquatic creatures
  • bags intended for uncooked meat
  • bags distributed in places of transit (e.g. boats, trains and airports)

Retailers are free to use the proceeds of the charge as they wish (although they are strongly encouraged to donate them to “good causes”).

Gambling – New Consultation on Crime & Disorder and the LCCP

Posted: 30 Sep 2015 05:00 PM PDT

The Gambling Commission commenced yet another consultation on 30th September. This will run until 30th December and invites operators and members of the public to participate.

The focus of the consultation is said to be on “improving practices to keep gambling free from crime and being associated with crime”

A spokesman for the Commission stated;

“This consultation offers an opportunity for everyone to have their say on a series of critical questions. We expect that licensees will want to share their own experience and good practices in order to help keep gambling crime free.”

This consultation comes nearly ten years after the introduction of the Gambling Act 2005, and “draws on the evidence and experience that the Commission and the industry have gathered throughout that period”.

The consultation also states that it will cover the following three areas

 

  • proposed changes to the LCCP to improve regulatory tools to support good practices by licensees and tackle poor practice more effectively.
  • seeking views and opinion on some emerging areas in order to inform the GC thinking as it develops.
  • to consult on an update to guidance for remote and non-remote casinos The Prevention of Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism (third edition).

 

The consultation will not however revisit areas covered by the last LCCP consultation “at this time”

Guidance on the licensing of late night refreshment

Posted: 30 Sep 2015 05:00 PM PDT

The Home Office has today issued guidance on the licensing of late night refreshment to reflect forthcoming changes to the Licensing Act 2003 made by the Deregulation Act 2015. As a reminder, the changes will allow Licensing Authorities to exempt supplies of late night refreshment:

 

  • on or from premises which are wholly situated in a designated area;
  • on or from premises which are of a designated description; or
  • during a designated period (beginning no earlier than 23.00 and ending no later than 05.00).

 

This guidance, which can be found here, is not issued as part of the statutory guidance under section 182 of the 2003 Act but will be incorporated into the section 182 guidance when it is next updated.

In terms of the timescales of the changes, the covering note on the gov.uk website states: “The provisions in the Deregulation Act 2015 that this guidance covers came into force on 1 October 2015; however the changes will not come into effect in full until November 2015 when the regulations prescribing premises types come into force”.

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