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Thread: Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust wanting Vollys


 
  1. #31


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    Is it just me who sees that there is glaring problem with this - in a time where archaeological jobs are becoming harder and harder to come by is it a responsible practice to effectively remove yet another position that should be paid from the job pool. A single person/ more than one people could be trained and paid towards a role in curatorial which often requires HER experience. Our graduates can not enter the profession with their level of debt and find themselves volunteering as there are no paid jobs. We have a responsibility towards the next generation and it is things like this that are effectively pulling up the ladder after us.

    We must not forget that the trusts receive funding to maintain the HER's and if they are unable to manage these resources then they need to seriously consider ways other than volunteers to plug the gaps. The units have a massive commercial advantage in that they have free access to the HER whenever they need it and surely moving digging staff into these roles when work is slack would be a much fairer way of ensuring the work is done.

    If we keep using more and more volunteers in roles like this then surely we risk losing more and more paid positions within the profession and we reach a point where there is no value placed on our skills. This is the tip of the iceberg but it's huge and looming below the surface. Is it more cost effective in the longrun to keep spending a staff members time reteaching and rechecking over and over again or to train someone who will stay within the profession and use what they have learnt.

    But if the work to compile Archwilio is being done by volunteers then why should commercial companies not have free access? If we are paying for access then what we pay for access to the resource should be paying to perpetuate the work.

  2. #32
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    There's several issues here:

    volunteers replacing a potential job

    The funding provided to facilitate and train the volunteers was only made available on the basis of the additional 'in kind' benefit of the volunteer contribution. There would be no funding for a HER post. GGAT, as an educational charity, has always sought to encourage involvement of all people with their heritage, including site work, finds processing, erosion monitoring, and HER enhancement, and this is a development of that work. We believe that having people in the community who are archaeologically aware is good for society. GGAT recognises the difficulties for new entrants to the profession and has been involved in several placement schemes aimed at addressing them.

    access to HER

    GGAT's commercial arm, GGAT Projects, pays the same access charge as other commercial contractors.

    charging regime

    There is normally no charge for non-commercial enquiries.

    The charge for HER enquiries is for the cost of the staff time involved in processing the enquiries as per the Welsh Archaeological Trusts' policy for access and charging: "Charges to bodies or individuals undertaking work on a commercial basis will normally be on a full costrecovery basis, including the salary costs of staff reassigned from other duties." This is not a charge for having compiled the record in the first place. (The funding provided to support the HER service specifically excludes the processing of commercial enquiries and therefore this service would not be available at all if no charge was made).

    Archwilio give free online access to all the HERs in Wales.

  3. #33


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    Consistent sound comment from Martin in this thread, well put all round

    I think trowelfodder’s point about access might refer to ad hoc access to the HER resources, even if a charge is levied for formal enquiries. Wouldn’t allowing contract staff to fulfil that role add to the perceived dodginess of having both commercial and curatorial under one roof?

    Our graduates can not enter the profession with their level of debt...
    It’s a moot point as to whether graduates can enter the profession with their level of skills and experience.

    ...and find themselves volunteering as there are no paid jobs
    And thus getting a teeny bit of experience and contacts to help in the job scramble?

    As I think was mentioned earlier in the thread, it’s only 10 days; there’s not funding for a paid post and that’s short term even by contract standards! I am sure the HERs would love extra funding to have additional staff but it ain’t gonna happen. Meanwhile, there a lot of people who would like to get involved in archaeology somehow, but volunteer fieldwork is in short supply, perhaps too expensive, or perhaps isn’t possible for whatever reason. Should they be turned away while useful-but-dull work lies waiting, or encouraged and trained, enhancing the record and spreading a positive image of archaeology as inclusive and worthwhile? And possibly adding more prospective professionals - would TF see this as a good or bad thing I wonder? Involving volunteers surely falls within the obligation of a trust for outreach and education.

    But if the work to compile Archwilio is being done by volunteers then why should commercial companies not have free access?
    Why indeed? It seems an entirely possible direction that contractors may only need to consult Archwilio / HER+OASIS plus local archives to get the baseline, and where will the HERs be then? What would fill the income gap? And isn’t the cost passed on to the client anyway?

  4. #34
    Commander of the BAJRites Wax's Avatar
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    Martin's feed back has shown this to be a sound project. In an ideal world there would be funding to bring HERs up to their full potential using professional well,paid staff. We don't live in an ideal world.

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    PRIOR YEAR ADJUSTMENT For Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological
    The Trust registered for VAT in 2009. Subsequent to this it has been established that the Trust was obliged to register on the 1st April 1989.


    Following negotiations with Her majesty's Revenue and Customs the back dated VAT liability payable by the Trust has been assessed and agreed as ?582,600. A time to pay proposal has been agreed with Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs for the Trust to repay E4,250 per month and the outstanding liability as at the balance sheet date was: ?363,944.




    According to HMRC for twenty years it doesnt look "sound". 25 grand a year might have gone somewhere towards paying for HER baubellum.

    I presume that Martin does not know what isnt zero rated in the VAT world? Books for instance, context sheets? graphics, photographs, education, knowledge, copyright. But they have found something that they charge and pay VAT for. What do they charge little old ladies 20% VAT for? (is it 20%)


  6. #36
    Chivalric Lord of BAJR kevin wooldridge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by trowelfodder View Post
    Is it just me who sees that there is glaring problem with this.....
    No...I too share many of your reservations.

    There is a general consensus in all walks of life that those who choose to deplete or destroy irreplaceable resources should pay not only the costs of their trade but also some measure to recompence society. In general terms this is called polluter pays. In archaeology you can replace 'polluter' with client/developer or whatever term you choose to use. The fact that there is a crisis in funding in archaeology (has been in the past as well) is clearly because the polluter in our industry is failing to pay adequately. And this it has to be said is largely the fault of our 'self-regulating' industry in allowing the polluter to get away with not paying the full price for beiong allowed to exploit the resource.

    The answer is therefore not to try and cover our error by substituting volunteers for paid workers, but to insist that the polluter pays the full and ongoing price for the service. In the case of GGAT, if a polluter or a polluters agents (commercial archaeologists) need access to a resource to allow their planning permission to go through they should pay the full price and that means the price of a fully funded HER service including updating the database when necessary.

    In reply to Serpentine I am not sure that there is an obligation on a trust to involve volunteers in its outreach and eduacational ends, merely that it is obliged to pursue outreach and educational ends. If it chooses to involve volunteers that is one strand, it could as easily promote the engagement of professionally qualified and well paid mentors as well!!

    In an 'ideal world' (to quote Wax) archaeological trusts should be pursuing a campaign to ensure that all of its activities are properly resourced and funded. Its seems to me disingenuous to 'employ' volunteers, if at the same time you are not making a hell of a noise about why this is necessary, when currently we live in a nation of 3 million unemployed and more specifically a profession where new graduate employment benefits only the very very few....

    Charity and benevolence are for the likes of the Salvation Army, not professional archaeologists
    Last edited by kevin wooldridge; 3rd May 2012 at 11:30 AM.
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  7. #37
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    Here, here, Kev, and lets make it more even expensive for the developer by putting VAT on THEIR archaeology and still have to have vollys doing the jobs of recent graduates who are trying to pay off the bankers debts.

    Trying to get my mind round this You have a law that says that if a little old lady wants permission to develop their land that they must undertake some archaeology (whatever that is, you decide). They must find an archaeologist who must goon on to the little old ladies land and in some cases totally excavate the archaeology that is there. These archaeologists must then educate as many public plebeians as they can as to what was observed on this persons land. These archaeologists must then encourage the person who owns the land to donate all the things that were found on the land and all the records that were made of archaeology that was on this little old ladies land to the museum. The archaeologist will then charge the little old lady to do all this including radiocarbon dates and to pay for keeping the little old ladies things in a museum store. When the archaeologists adds up the costs of everything that they have done and produced for the little old lady for the good of the peoples republic of wales and possibly the whole of humanity, the little old lady must pay 20%, maybe 7.5% there and a 5% here, above the costs. (obviously(not) if the development is a newbuild maybe the little old lady can claim the costs back but not if it is an conservatory).
    PS forgot to add in HER photocopying VAT and giving advice to the advisors.
    Sorry this is all ideal speculation because I don?t know what you charge VAT for as I have never seen any definitive statement about ?archaeology?and VAT made by say for example the ifa 0r HMRC or bajr and even those who have paid it. I did once have the good doctor go on about talk to your accountant but I haven?t got one.

    Have a Jaffa cake

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    Yep. Whats the problem with this?
    If someone wants to destroy some archaeology they should pay to have it recorded first.
    Same goes for badgers, bats, newts, historic hedges etc etc etc.

    It doesn't matter if they are an evil corporation, a profit-seeking corrupt politician, or an impoverished OAP.

    Otherwise it wouldn't be fair

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    If thats how they win jobs at Gwent and support the voliteering HER, good luck to them

    dont need to think about things like this then
    http://customs.hmrc.gov.uk/channelsP...yType=document

    although as it stands for archaeology you add everything up add your profit after paying yourself a pittence vocational wage and accept being treated like a voluintere and then add 20% to the bill. The fact is if the client is prepared to pay 20% MORE I would rather have it to give directly to the vloiytuier and undercut the next archaeologist.
    Last edited by Unitof1; 3rd May 2012 at 01:40 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Unitof1 View Post
    Here, here, Kev, and lets make it more even expensive for the developer by putting VAT on THEIR archaeology and still have to have vollys doing the jobs of recent graduates who are trying to pay off the bankers debts.

    Trying to get my mind round this You have a law that says that if a little old lady wants permission to develop their land that they must undertake some archaeology (whatever that is, you decide). They must find an archaeologist who must goon on to the little old ladies land and in some cases totally excavate the archaeology that is there. These archaeologists must then educate as many public plebeians as they can as to what was observed on this persons land. These archaeologists must then encourage the person who owns the land to donate all the things that were found on the land and all the records that were made of archaeology that was on this little old ladies land to the museum. The archaeologist will then charge the little old lady to do all this including radiocarbon dates and to pay for keeping the little old ladies things in a museum store. When the archaeologists adds up the costs of everything that they have done and produced for the little old lady for the good of the peoples republic of wales and possibly the whole of humanity, the little old lady must pay 20%, maybe 7.5% there and a 5% here, above the costs. (obviously(not) if the development is a newbuild maybe the little old lady can claim the costs back but not if it is an conservatory).
    PS forgot to add in HER photocopying VAT and giving advice to the advisors.
    Sorry this is all ideal speculation because I don’t know what you charge VAT for as I have never seen any definitive statement about “archaeology”and VAT made by say for example the ifa 0r HMRC or bajr and even those who have paid it. I did once have the good doctor go on about talk to your accountant but I haven’t got one.

    Have a Jaffa cake
    are you trying to say that you dont do everything you can to win a tender even if it means putting some other trowel weilder out of a job?
    are you vat registered?
    do you do a discount for cash?
    do you use self employed help?
    do your nephews work for you for cash?
    just wonderin
    If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don't have to worry about answers

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