To seek Cabinet’s approval of the latest financial forecast and final General Fund budget proposals 2022/23 (including Council Tax proposals) for recommendation to Council on 15 February 2022.
RESOLVED that Cabinet –
(a) approves the latest financial forecast set out in Appendix A, along with the savings and cost pressures set out in Appendix B and C respectively that form the firm proposals for the 2022/23 budget and recommends to Full Council a Band D Council Tax for district services of £182.64 for 2022/23 (a £5 increase), along with the associated council tax requirement of £9.112m;
(b) authorises the Portfolio Holder for Corporate Finance and Governance to agree the ‘technical’ appendices and resolutions for the budget proposals for recommending to Full Council on 15 February 2022;
(c) authorises the Chief Executive, in consultation with the Leader of the Council and the Corporate Finance and Governance Portfolio Holder, to report directly to Council in respect of the formal resolutions necessary to implement the Executive’s budget proposals along with any late information or notifications received from the Government;
(d) authorises the Portfolio Holder for Corporate Finance and Governance, to agree / adopt a Retail, Hospitality and Leisure mandatory business rate relief scheme for 2022/23;
(e) authorisesthe Portfolio Holder for Corporate Finance and Governance to approve the draft Treasury Strategy 2022/23 for consultation with the Resources and Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee; and
(f) approves that, in respect of the in-year budget for 2021/22, £0.064m be added to the Capital Programme in order to enable the purchase and installation of additional audio and visual equipment associated with the ‘live streaming’ of meetings and improving the quality of sound within the new committee room, which will be funded by adjustments elsewhere within the overall 2021/22 budget, as identified by the Assistant Director (Finance & IT), in consultation with the Portfolio Holder for Corporate Finance and Governance.
Cabinet gave consideration to a report of the Corporate Finance & Governance Portfolio Holder (A.3) which sought its approval of the:-
· latest financial forecast / budget proposals and council tax amount for 2022/23 for recommending to Full Council; and
· associated delegations to the Portfolio Holder for Corporate Finance and Governance to:-
i) agree the detailed budget proposals and formal draft resolutions / ‘technical’ appendices required for Full Council on 15 February 2022; and
ii) agree / adopt an associated mandatory business rate relief scheme for 2022/23.
Cabinet recalled that, at its meeting held on 17 December 2021 (Minute 99 referred), it had considered the Updated Financial Forecast / Budget 2022/23. The forecast at that time provided for a deficit of £1.488m that was to be met by drawing down money from the Forecast Risk Fund. That Updated Financial Forecast had subsequently been subject to consultation with the Resources and Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee, which had met on 12 January 2022, and that Committee’s comments had been considered earlier in the meeting (as reported above under Minute 116).
It was reported that, since the Cabinet’s meeting on 17 December 2021, additional changes had been required, primarily as a result of new or revised information becoming available which had included the Government’s Financial Settlement announcements.
Members were informed that the changes required had resulted in a reduced deficit for 2022/23 of £0.431m, a change of £1.057m compared to the £1.488m deficit presented to Cabinet in December 2021. Appendix A to the Portfolio Holder’s report, along with comments set out later on in the report, provided further details across the various lines of the forecast, with the most significant change being the receipt of the revenue support grant and other associated funding from the Government. In addition, the most up to date savings schedule and cost pressure summary were set out in Appendices B and C respectively.
Cabinet was made aware that, in order to enable the detailed estimates along with the various resolutions / ‘technical’ appendices required for Full Council in February 2022 to be finalised, a delegation to the Portfolio Holder for Corporate Finance and Governance had been included within the Portfolio Holder’s written recommendations. A further delegation had also been included to enable a business rate relief policy, associated with a 2022/23 mandatory Government relief scheme, to be finalised in advance of bills being printed and sent out before the start of the new financial year.
Members were advised that the budget position set out in this report might change, as further adjustments could be required as part of finalising the budget for presenting to Council on 15 February 2022, with a further delegation included in the Portfolio Holder’s recommendations to reflect this.
Cabinet was informed that, based on the final proposed budget for 2022/23, the Council Tax requirement was £9.112m, which was based on a £5 increase for this Council’s services, with a Band D council tax of £182.64. Those figures would remain unchanged and therefore would be reflected ... view the full minutes text for item 118