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29Oct92 UK: CPA BLASTS 'PHOENIX' FIRMS.

The Construction Plant-hire Association (CPA) criticises 'pheonix companies' in its annual report just out.In his appraisal of the year, CPA president Ivor Kiddle says: 'The Association is very concerned with the current practice whereby companies go into voluntary liquidation owing large amounts of money, only to reopen under a new name with the same directors.'Mr Kiddle, also voices concerns about the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB). He says the CPA has reservations over the availability of grants, the size and method of collecting the annual CITB levy as well as the CITB's management structure.However, Mr Kiddle says that the CPA will continue to support the CITB, as removal of the levy scheme would have a disastrous effect on training.Earlier this year, a contractor sent a letter to a number of CPA member firms, attempting to reverse the effect of some of the main contractural terms in the CPA's Model Terms and Conditions for hiring plant.But Mr Kiddle says that the CPA objected strongly and was able to stop unauthorised changes to the conditions.Membership of the CPA has dropped to 1,036 because of the recession but Mr Kiddle says the hire industry does have one encouraging sign in that hire rates have stabilised and even show signs of recovery.Two victims of the recession are the CPA Yearbook and the UK Plantfinder for 1992 which will not be published. This is because the publishing company which prints the publications has been placed in the hands of the receivers.

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