To note the projected year end position based on performance to the end of Quarter 3 2020/21 and to consider a budget virement request.
The Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder presented the third quarter financial monitoring report of 2020/21. The report provided the projected year-end positon based on performance to the end of Quarter 3 2020/21 and officers planned actions to ensure a balanced budget by the end of the financial year.
In presenting the report in detail, the Portfolio Holder highlighted Appendix 1, which set out the revenues variances to date. Additional costs and loss of income for the remaining year had been expected to be £1.29m; the total expected service cost of the pandemic was £3.486m. The Portfolio Holder detailed the claims to date, made under the Government’s Sales, Fees and Charges Support Scheme, adding that it was expected that a further claim for the remainder of 2020/21 would bring the total to £1.747m, which had reduced the total service cost of the pandemic to £1.569. Overall, at the end of Quarter 3, budget monitoring had identified a forecast business as usual year-end overspend of £65k. The Portfolio Holder informed Members that any future carry forwards would be considered carefully, due to the impact on the deficit.
Appendix 2 set out the position on the Capital Programme. The capital budget for 2020/21, approved by Council in February 2020 had been £22.083m. The Finance and Resources Portfolio Holder highlighted a request for the re-profiling of £4.678m which had been set out at paragraph 3.2.3 as well as a Virement request for £314,000 to be transferred from reserves to the 2021/22 revenue budgets to fund the Community Led Housing Officer post and capacity grants.
Councillor Jarvis highlighted to Members, the inclusion of a fourth recommendation to the report which sought to transfer any unspent funds from the Councillor Locality budget to the Personal Finance Resilience Reserve at year end.
Appendix 3 provided an overview of the Council’s investments and highlighted that they had performed well against market expectations, with all investments performing in excess of their benchmarks.
Councillor Jarvis, in closing, said that the report highlighted that this Council was financially well-managed, running a balanced budget whilst continuing to deliver services and invest in improvements to the way it carried out business. He thanked the Finance Lead Specialist (Section 151 Officer) and the Finance Team for their work in producing the report.
During discussion on the Item, Members expressed their support and thanks for the hard work of officers. Councillor Jarvis, in responding to a request to consider moving any unspent budgets of Councillors who have resigned to allow the fellow ward Councillors to use the unspent budgets if possible before the deadline, agreed to provide a written response after consulting with Officers. Further discussion on this item highlighted the impact of Covid-19 and hopes that the Government would cover all costs for Local Councils throughout the pandemic to ensure they were not left to recover from the impact of the pandemic without support.
RESOLVED – That:-
(1) the contents of the report and Appendices 1-3, be noted;
(2) the re-profiling of the Capital Programme as shown in 3.2.3, be approved; and
(3) the use of reserves for Community Housing Fund for 2021/22 as set out in 3.3, be approved.
(4) approve the transfer of any unspent Councillor Locality Budget to the Personal Finance Resilience Reserve at year end.