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Dock Workers

Volume 77: debated on Thursday 18 April 1985

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  • (1) In section 4(7) of the Social Security Act 1975 (power to make regulations providing for reducing secondary Class 1 contributions in respect of persons to whom section 81 (redundancy payments) of the Employment Protection (Consolidation) Act 1978 does not apply) after the word "reducing" there shall be inserted the words "primary or".
  • (2) In regulation 133 of the Social Security (Contributions) Regulations 1979 (reduction of primary Class 1 contributions of dock workers) for "0.35" there shall be substituted "O.25"
  • (3) Subsection (2) above shall be deemed to have come
  • With this, it will be convenient to take Government amendment No. 136.

    New clause 17 takes us into rather different territory and brings us to the question of contributions by dock workers. The new clause repairs a recently discovered defect in the powers of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State to vary by regulation the special rate of national insurance contributions paid by registered dock workers.

    Both mariners and dock workers have their own redundancy schemes. The mariners in question pay a special rate of national insurance contributions because it is abated by that amount which other earners pay through their national insurance contributions into the state redundancy scheme. We have recently discovered that the detailed powers to alter the contributions paid by mariners and dock workers are not the same. I shall not go into the details unless the House wishes me to do so. However, subsection (1) of the new clause repairs the defect, and subsections (2) and (3) make the necessary changes to the existing regulations to reflect what has happened since April 1984, with dock workers paying the same rate as similarly placed mariners.

    As I have said, the new clause, while repairing a defect in the law by removing a discrepancy in the legal provisions affecting similarly placed mariners and dock workers, will not in practice affect the amounts now being paid by dock workers; nor will it require any action by their employers.

    Question put and agreed to.

    Clause read a Second time, and added to the Bill.