Issue - meetings

Review of budget and corporate plan proposals for 2020/21 relating to the remit of the adults and wellbeing scrutiny committee

Meeting: 13/01/2020 - Adults and wellbeing scrutiny committee (Item 36)

36 Review of budget and corporate plan proposals for 2020/21 relating to the remit of the adults and wellbeing scrutiny committee pdf icon PDF 590 KB

To seek the views of the adults and wellbeing scrutiny committee on the budget proposals for 2020/21 and on the draft corporate plan as they relate to the remit of the committee.

Additional documents:


The chairperson reminded the committee that the budget and corporate plan proposals had been considered initially at the 18 November 2019 meeting of the committee (minute 26 refers) and the purpose of this item was to reconsider the proposals following the conclusion of public consultation.


The chief finance officer presented the report, the principal points included:


1.         The updated corporate plan summary was appended to the report (agenda page 69) and the full corporate plan would be presented to the general scrutiny committee on 20 January 2020.


2.         The public consultation on the priorities for additional investment indicated that a high proportion of respondents supported investment in council-owned care homes or villages (81%), and publicly-owned affordable housing (79%).


3.         51.5% of respondents considered a 4% increase in Council Tax to be ‘about right’ (36.9%) or ‘too little’ (14.6%).


4.         53% disagreed with the allocation of Council Tax as set out in the budget till receipt.  Comments that expressed an opinion mostly said that not enough was allocated to particular services, especially services related to environment and place.


5.         The settlement from government had confirmed the provisional settlement, provided an increase in the revenue support grant (£635k), and confirmed the rural services delivery grant (£5.101m).  This resulted in an updated total net budget (£157.117m).  In addition, the settlement included funding in relation to new homes bonus (£2.2m); this had not be part of the budget assumptions.  Consultation on the settlement would end on 17 January 2020.


6.         The base net budget requirement for adults and communities remained the same (£56.282m).  Increases were identified for corporate services in relation to legal services (£700k) and to meet additional costs of borrowing (£318k) due to an increase in the public works loan board interest rate.


7.         It was clear that this was a one year settlement from government, with further policy announcements and changes expected later in the year.  This would enable Council to set a balanced budget for 2020/21 at its 14 February 2020 meeting.


8.         Work was ongoing on the models for delivering council housing which could lead to an investment of up to £100m in housing in the four years from 2022/23.  The funding from new homes bonus was earmarked to facilitate the delivery of houses.


9.         The 2020/21 assumptions had been adjusted, reflecting a 3.9% increase in Council Tax (1.9% general, 2% adults social care).  It was reported that the improved better care fund (£6.6m) and public health grant (£9.2m) would continue for another year.  It was noted that work was continuing on calculating the impact of the rise in the national living wage, including conversations with providers.


The chairperson invited contributions from the director for adults and communities and the attending cabinet members, the key points included:


i.           The director commented on the budget setting process and on the continuing development of the business cases to support the capital investment proposals.


ii.         The cabinet member - finance and corporate services welcomed suggestions and challenge in order to inform  ...  view the full minutes text for item 36