The introduction of Part P has put many electricians out of business & the rest under extreme beaurocratic & financial stress. With no subsidies offered whatsoever by Labour.Since 2004 electricians have had to shoulder many thousands of pounds in extra costs to keep afloat in relation to additional qualis, insurances (3 different kinds & upping the limit for public liability), form filling, memberships of professional schemes, additional stationary, surveillance visits, calibration certs & meters to calibrate meters, etc etc etc.
My biggest problem with this is that the public are largely unaware of Part P & all it entails. The last government had a tiny & inadequate leaflet the contractor could send away for!!
Consequently, all the modern H&S limitations stipulate such requirements as sparks being unable to energise a circuit if the existing installation is inadequate in some way etc. As the public don't know about this, you constantly hear things like 'But I only want a few sockets….why do I need a new consumer unit?' etc. This makes competent sparks look like conmen. It also influences customers to use 'the bloke down the pub' instead, who is usually unqualified, unsafe, not paying tax (therefore cheaper!) & doesn't test his work, thereby negating the so called benefits of Part P & revised BS7671 (2008). It's also driving many sparks to the wall as they simply can't afford to cover all these outgoings whilst making any profits when people think a £400 job should cost £100 because they don't know any better. Electricians were told that stringent action would be taken against 'cowboy' sparks working outside the law but this has failed to materialise. The cowboys are laughing all the way to the bank whilst fully compliant, tax paying small businesses are being forced into debt & bankruptcy.
Why is this idea important?
For the credibility & protection of the electrical industry, public safety, & elimination of 'cowboys' who are unregulated & non tax paying.
I agree with other posters that Part P has its flaws. However, if it is scrapped, the electricians who paid out a fortune in non-subsidised compliance measures (not to mention the stress it's caused!) should be compensated in some way if it is axed.