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Independent Review of the Budget Setting Process and Wider Governance Issues

28/10/2022 - Independent Review of the Budget Setting Process and Wider Governance Issues

Matter for Decision

An independent review, attached at Appendix 1, has been commissioned assessing the Council's budget policy framework and process. This builds on wider work the Council is developing to enable and support its transformation journey. This report considers the review’s recommendations for changes to current arrangements.


The review makes ten wide-ranging recommendations, covering political management arrangements, member training and development, as well as specific recommendations relating to the budget process and timetable. Whilst some recommendations can be implemented immediately, others require changes to the council’s constitution and further consideration of their wider impacts.


Decision of Executive Councillor for Finance, Resources and Transformation

Note the recommendations in Section 10 of the review report attached at Appendix 1.


Agree to transition to the new budget process this year, with further changes being brought in next year, both subject to constitutional change.


Ask officers to draft proposals for changes to the council’s constitution arising from the review of the budget setting process, to be brought forward for approval by Civic Affairs and Full Council.


Ask officers to work with the Leader/Executive to develop a broader consultative process, with input from opposition Group Leaders, to consider how to take forward the recommendations of the Independent Renumeration Panel and Council-commissioned analysis of its decision making, and democratic processes undertaken by Centre for Governance and Scrutiny (CfGS).


Reason for the Decision

As set out in the Officer’s report.


Any Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

Not applicable.


Scrutiny Considerations

The Committee considered a report from the Head of Finance. The Independent Consultant, Chris West was also present to answer questions.


The Committee unanimously endorsed the recommendations.


The Executive Councillor approved the recommendations.


Conflicts of Interest Declared by the Executive Councillor (and any Dispensations Granted)

No conflicts of interest were declared by the Executive Councillor.