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HSE seeks to answer questions

In a bid to lessen installer confusion in the wake of Capita being awarded preferred bidder for the new gas installer registration scheme, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has released official answers to questions being raised by the industry.

The HSE made the announcement last month and the new scheme is due to start in April 2009 with current provider CORGI a reserve bidder.

Since then various concerns regarding the scheme have been raised with many making comments on www.hvnplus.co.uk

Issues covered on the HSE website include rationale and approach, transition arrangements and timescales, scheme name, brand and logo and gas qualifications.

Questions covered range from 'Why do we need a new gas safety brand?' to 'Will installers have to throw away their CORGI related paperwork, forms and work wear when the new scheme starts?'

The website states: 'Most change involves some level of investment. For instance, there will be costs associated with developing and launching the new gas safety brand. However, because we are offering the new provider a long-term concession agreement, this gives the scheme provider time to recoup their investment.

'An important requirement with the new scheme is that fees for installers should be fixed at affordable levels and come down in real terms during the period of the agreement. Further announcements on the fees will be made when the contractual arrangements are finalised.

'Announcements of the changes that will occur from April 2009 will be made as soon as possible once the contractual arrangements are finalised. Further advice and support about the new scheme will be made available to installers at that stage. There are plans in place to minimise any possible confusion and ensure a smooth transition.'