The Executive Member for Finance, Councillor T. Schofield, presented the report on the 2016/17 provisional outturn for the revenue budget and capital programme which had recorded underspends respectively of £1,035,200 and £2,140,000. The Executive Member referred to the external constraints that had made it a difficult year but with careful budget management and a shrewd commercial approach to business had resulted in an exceptionally better year than could have been predicted.
Councillor Schofield was therefore pleased to report on such a positive outcome to the year. The report identified and explained key variances in the revenue budget noting in particular some of the reasons for our success being improved recyclate prices, increased car parking income, increased supply of temporary accommodation and preventative activity leading to reduced B&B accommodation costs.
In relation to the capital programme, it was noted that the main components of the 2016/17 underspend had been marginal. A significant amount of capital projects had been delivered which supported the Council’s objectives. The unspent budget would remain in the Council’s capital reserves.
The Executive Member also referred to the importance of the 5 Year Plan objectives, particularly in seeking to ensure that the Council achieved financial self sufficiency, acknowledging the necessity to identify new income streams to manage projected further reductions in existing funding.
Councillor T. Schofield therefore emphasised the importance of resourcing the 5 Year Plan priorities properly to achieve the Council’s financial objectives. He proposed therefore that the revenue underspend be used to replenish funds within the Corporate Plan Delivery Fund (CPDF) with a further £2.272m being transferred to this fund from reserves to bring the balance on the CPDF to a sensible working balance of £4.0m.
The Executive also noted the treasury performance for the year; confirmed that no prudential limits had been breached and that all decisions had been taken in accordance with the Treasury Management Strategy.
The Overview and Scrutiny Committee considered the report on 13th June 2017 and made no comments for the Executive’s consideration.
(i) the provisional revenue and capital outturn position for 2016/17 be noted;
(ii) the use of reserves proposed in paragraph 10 of the report to the Executive be endorsed and the Finance Manager be authorised to make the necessary arrangements; and
(iii) the Annual Treasury Management Report (Annex 2 of the report to the Executive) be noted.
Reasons for decision: To advise Members of the revenue and capital expenditure for 2016/17, to seek authorisation for the proposed changes to reserves and to comply with the Council’s reporting requirements in relation to Treasury Management activity.
Alternative options: To amend the proposals to adjust reserves as set out in the report.