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Edinburgh Live
Edinburgh Live
Marie Sharp

East Lothian Council set to double staff homeworking allowance as cost of living crisis grows

East Lothian Council is set to double to home working allowance for staff in a bod to encourage more to sign up to contracts.

A report to the council's Labour administration cabinet next week will say the cost of living crisis has made the current £156 annual allowance a 'disincentive' to staff who can work from home.

It proposed doubling the payment to the maximum allowed by the HMRC before tax is charged which currently stands at £312.

READ MORE: East Lothian leader brands new national care service 'centralisation gone mad'

And it estimates it could increase the number of staff working from home from 236 to 400 bring an additional cost of just under £88,000 to the council.

The report says: "The cost of living crisis and the impending rise in utility bills means that the sum set out in the Home Working Policy will not now be sufficient to cover the expenses involved in homeworking and the level at which it is set may be a disincentive to employees coming forward to become homeworkers.

"There are currently 236 contractual homeworkers.

"It is estimated that there may be up to 800 posts in scope for potential homeworking although not all would be suitable for approval.

"A more realistic estimate would be around 400 posts.

" It is anticipated that an increase in the homeworking allowance to the HMRC maximum tax free level of £312 per annum would encourage more people to come forward and formalise their working arrangements under the contractual home working."

It is proposed to start paying the additional payment to workers from October 1 if approved by cabinet on Tuesday next week.

The report adds: "Contractual homeworking remains one of our primary tools to drive new ways of working, efficient use of our estate and measures to address the Climate Emergency."


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