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THE GENERAL election overshadowed the month with Labour's landslide win prompting the industry to start lobbying furiously for its favourite causes. The new government surprised many with its swift response, announcing within a fortnight a plan to review £2 billion-worth of stalled PFI hospitals and

assuring that further PFI prisons were on their way.

John Prescott, now a key figure in the transport and environment superministry, was reported to be planning a new council house building programme for up to 100,000 new homes a year, using private sector funds. By the month's end, preliminary legislation had been passed, freeing the capital receipts for this purpose.

On site, the CIB drew up a code of practice to protect subbies from sharp practices such as Dutch auctions and bid peddling.

The 49 steel erectors sacked by Cleveland Bridge on the Avonmouth Bridge project for taking an

unauthorised tea break were reinstated.

Unions representing brickwork contractors warned that putting self-employed workers on the PAYE scheme was luring thousands of brickies to work on the black market.