UK - Brighton & Hove City Council has introduced a voucher scheme to save employees money on childcare costs.
The scheme ñ run by provider Sodexho Pass ñ is aimed at staff who earn between £4745 and £31,720 a year and have children under the age of 16.
More than 100 scheme information packs have been sent out to employees who have registered an interest since the scheme was launched in April with 33 members of staff currently using vouchers.
Brighton & Hove launched the scheme as part of the government’s national childcare strategy, which encourages employer support, and is linked to the councilís staff care, recruitment and retention policy.
The Sodexho voucher sch-eme allows staff to take part of their pay in vouchers, thus avoiding National Insurance contributions - effectively saving 11% on childcare costs.
Childcare providers - nurseries, registered childminders, holiday schemes, nannies and relatives - can be paid in vouchers which are then redeemed through Sodexho directly into the providerís bank account.
Brighton & Hove City Council childcare strategy development manager Vicky Jenkins said there had been positive feedback and growing interest about the scheme.
She said: “From April 2005 childcare vouchers will be tax, as well as National Insurance, free. While there will be a weekly limit on the amount an employee can purchase of £50, it is anticipated this will result in further increased take-up.”
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