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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Committee Room 1 & 2, The Guildhall, Market Square, Cambridge, CB2 3QJ. View directions

Contact: Democratic Services  Committee Manager

Items
No. Item

18/1/Exec

Apologies

Minutes:

There were none.

18/2/Exec

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

 

No declarations of interest were made.

18/3/Exec

Minutes pdf icon PDF 230 KB

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 26 January 2017 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

18/4/Exec

Public Questions

Minutes:

There were no public questions.

 

18/5/Exec

Budget Setting Report 2017/18 pdf icon PDF 272 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

 

Matter for decision

 

The Budget-Setting Report (BSR), includes the detailed revenue bids and savings and capital proposals and sets out the key parameters for the detailed recommendations and budget finalisation being considered at this meeting.

 

The recommendations that follow refer to the strategy outlined in the BSR and all references to Appendices, pages and sections relate to the Budget-Setting Report 2018/19 (Version 1 – Strategy & Resources).

 

Decision of the Executive

 

The Executive resolved to recommend the Budget Setting Report 2018/19 to Council on 22 February 2018.

 

General Fund Revenue Budgets: [Section 5, page 31 refers]

 

a)  Agree any recommendations for submission to Council in respect of:

 

·  Revenue Pressures shown in Appendix C (a) and Savings shown in

Appendix C (b).

 

·  Bids to be funded from External or Earmarked  Funds as shown in

Appendix C (c).

 

·  Non-Cash Limit items as shown in Appendix C (d).

 

b)  Recommend to Council formally confirming delegation to the Chief Financial Officer (Head of Finance) of the calculation and determination of the Council Tax taxbase (including submission of the National Non-Domestic Rates Forecast Form, NNDR1, for each financial year) which will be set out in Appendix A (a).

 

c)  Recommend to Council the level of Council Tax for 2018/19 as set out in

Section 4 [page 28 refers].

 

Note that the Cambridgeshire Police and Crime Panel will meet on 31 January

2018 to consider the precept proposed by the Police and Crime Commissioner, Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Fire Authority will meet on 8 February 2018 and Cambridgeshire County Council will meet on 9 February 2018 to consider the amounts in precepts to be issued to the City Council for the year 2018/19.

 

Other Revenue:

 

d)  Recommend to Council delegation to the Head of Finance authority to finalise changes relating to any corporate and/or departmental restructuring and any reallocation of support service and central costs, in accordance with the CIPFA Service Reporting Code of Practice for Local Authorities (SeRCOP).

 

e)  Recommend to Council approval of setting up an earmarked fund - the “GF development fund” [with the remit as page 27 refers]. The council will provide loans to Cambridge Investment Partnership (CIP), of which it is a member, to support the development of the former council depot on Mill Road. The proposals and resulting interest income are covered in more detail in Section 5. It is proposed to retain income from this and other CIP developments in an earmarked reserve reflecting uncertainty in both timings and quantum, and to provide a contingency fund reflecting the potential risks in this scheme and future schemes under development.

 

Capital: [Section 7, page 37 refers] Capital Plan:

f)   Recommend to Council the proposals outlined in Appendix E (a) for inclusion in the Capital Plan, including any additional use of revenue resources required.

 

 

g) Recommend to Council the revised Capital Plan for the General Fund as set out in Appendix E (d), the Funding as set out in Section 7, page 40 and note the Projects Under Development list set out in Appendix E (e).

 

 

General Fund Reserves:

 

h)  Note the impact of revenue and capital budget approvals and approve the resulting level of reserves to be used to support the budget proposals as set out in the table [Section 8, page 45 refers].

 

Section 25 Report: insert into the BSR as per the EXECUTIVE - Section 25 Report and to authorise the Section 151 officer to make necessary changes to the Budget-Setting Report 2018/19, to be considered by Council at the meeting on 22 February 2018, to reflect the impact of changes for the above.

 

Reason for the Decision

As set out in the officer report.

 

Any alternative options considered and rejected

Not applicable

 

Scrutiny considerations

 

The Chair took the budget section by section by Executive Councillor area of responsibility.  Questions were put to some Executive Councillors as follows:

Planning Policy and Transport:

What had been the costs of the change to pricing at car parks on Mondays and Tuesdays in 2017/18?

Cllr Blencowe advised that the change to pricing had been a trial which had not proved successful, however the car parks income target for 2017/18 had been met.

Strategy and Transformation:

 

What are the prospects for future savings from the shared services that are not already bedded into the budget?

Cllr Herbert responded that it is now realised that the initial 15% saving in year 1 was ambitious but there are efficiencies in shared management and integrated delivery, with technology led savings to come.  In terms of further sharing of services, finance has been identified and there will be others that would be considered.

 

Finance and Resources:

How rigorous is the capital programme?

 

Cllr Robertson stated that he was still not satisfied in this area, however the ruling group had inherited a problems with the overall programme and had made some progress.  There is a preparedness in the forward and contingency planning in place e.g. for any reductions in the new homes bonus.

If there is a future need to scale back the capital planning that would be something to address at the time.

What are the equality and poverty impacts on the preparation of the Budget?

Cllr Robertson said that the budget would ensure that any spend would be targeted on dealing with poverty in the city.  Each of the ruling groups priorities to help poverty has been given attention.

Should the council leave the national bargaining arrangement on employee pay?

Cllr Robertson stated that it was better to be included in national agreements.  Trade Union negotiated agreements will pay fairer.  The Council can also choose to pay market supplements if there are recruitment and retention issues.

Why did the proposal on council tax go for £5 rather than 3% (page 29 of the Budget SR)?

 

Cllr Robertson stated that £5 was 2.69% and it was thought that was a sufficient and explainable increase.  Were it to have gone up by 3% the additional income city wide would have been £26,000.