Agenda item

Quarter 2 Budget & Performance Report

To review performance for Quarter 2 2020/21 and the budget forecast; and

To provide assurance that progress has being made towards achievement of the agreed revenue budget and service delivery targets, and that the reasons for major variances or potential under-performance are understood and are being addressed to the cabinet’s satisfaction. 


The chief financial officer introduced the report. He explained that the council was in a very unusual situation of reporting a very large overspend due to the impact of the coronavirus. Additional funds were being received from the government so the report represented the current best estimate of the year end position.


Cabinet members noted that every effort was being made to control spending and that the council had entered this crisis with its finances in a good position. The announcements in the government’s spending review provided helpful clarity for the year ahead but it was difficult to make long term spending plans without details of future funding. The efforts of staff during this difficult time were noted.


Group leaders were invited to raise the comments and queries of their groups. It was noted that:

                  The council faced extraordinary difficulties and the efforts of officers to manage the situation were recognised;

                  The council was seeing an increase in the number of people requesting support and this was likely to continue well into the next year, where individuals fell into arrears with council tax the usual processes would be followed;

                  The chief financial officer would provide group leaders with a summary of general and earmarked reserves currently held by the council, he was comfortable that any shortfall this financial year could be comfortably accommodated;

                  The government had revisited the public works board lending rate but the consequent reduction in the cost of borrowing would only impact on new loans as existing loans could not be renegotiated.


It was resolved that:


(a) Cabinet reviewed performance and financial outturn for quarter 2 2020/21, as set out in appendices 1 - 8, and did not identify any additional actions to be considered to achieve future improvement.


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