Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Is Key decision?: Yes
Is subject to call in?: No
That it be recommended to Council that it :-
a) Approves the 2021/22 net Revenue Budget of £179.30m.
b) Approves the 2022/23 to 2023/24 Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS) including the income and savings proposals.
c) Approves the calculation of the Council Tax Requirement as summarised in Section 8.1 and set out in the Formal Council Tax Resolution in Annex J to the report (any update for changes in Mayoral Police and Crime Commissioner or Mayoral General (incl. Fire Services) Precepts, if any, will be tabled at the Council Meeting);
d) Approves the proposal to increase Council Tax by 4.99% in 2021/22:
o 1.99% general increase in the ‘relevant basic amount’ in 2021/22, 2022/23 and 2023/24, and
o 3% for the ‘Adult Social Care’ precept in 2021/22.
e) Approves the continuation of the Council Tax Hardship scheme and awards all existing working age Council Tax Support (CTS) recipients registered as at 31st March 2021 – a discretionary Hardship award equivalent to the value of their 21/22 liability;
f) Approves the treatment of all new, post 31st March 2021, claims for CTS in accordance with the existing CTS scheme, as the vast majority of recipients will receive 100% support, and ensures direct information and advice for further discretionary support is detailed in notification letters;
g) Approves the planned application of earmarked reserves as detailed in Section 6 of the report.
h) Approves the Fees and Charges for 2021/22 and those relating to Registration of Births, Death & Marriages and Allotments also shown for 2022/23, as set out in the Fees & Charges booklet.
i) Delegates authority jointly to each Corporate Director in consultation with the Council’s Director of Finance and Systems to amend fees and charges which are within their respective delegated powers during 2021/22 in the event of any change in VAT rate, as appropriate.
j) Delegates authority jointly to each Corporate Director in consultation with the Council’s Director of Finance and Systems to amend fees and charges during 2021/22 which are within their respective delegated powers where the economics of the charge levels have changed (e.g. costs have risen unexpectedly), or for commercial reasons.
k) Approves the proposal to increase the minimum level of General Reserve for 2021/22 at £8.0m, an increase of £1m from 2020/21 (Section 6.6 of the report).
l) Approves the Capital Strategy, Prudential and Local Indicators and overall level of the Capital Programme and Asset Investment Fund of £415.40m (as detailed in the Capital Strategy, Capital Programme & Prudential Indicators 2021/24) of which £184.37m relates to 2021/22; including the proposal in relation to £10.0m of new prudential borrowing.
m) Approves the Treasury Management Strategy 2021/22 to 2023/24, including the debt strategy (Section 3 of the report), the Treasury Investment Strategy (Section 5 of the report) and the Prudential Indicators, including the Authorised Limit (as required by Section 3(1) of the Local Government Act 2003, Operational Boundary, Minimum Revenue Provision and investment criteria as set out in Appendix 3 of the report.
n) Approves the proposed distribution of Dedicated Schools Grant as recommended by the School Funding Forum and Executive as summarised in Section 7 of the report and detailed in Annex I.
o) Due to the late publication of the Final Local Government Finance Settlement, Council delegates authority to the Council’s designated S151 officer to vary the level of Budget Support Reserve needed to balance the 2021/22 revenue budget in the event of any change at final settlement.
and confirmed that in recommending approval of the above, the Executive has taken into consideration :
p) The objective assessment by the Director of Finance and Systems of the robustness of budget estimates and adequacy of the financial reserves (Section 6 of the report and Annex H).
q) The Executive’s response to the Scrutiny Committee’s recommendations to the budget proposals as included in a separate report on the agenda.
r) The Council’s Public Sector Equality duty.
s) The results of the consultation on the budget proposals where required.
In addition, that it be recommended that Council note the following :
t) The approval on 6 January 2021 under delegated powers by the Corporate Director of Finance and Systems of the Council Tax Base for 2021/22 at 75,816 Band D equivalents.
u) The estimated Council Tax deficit for 2020/21 has been calculated at £4.06m and will be collected over the three years 2021/2022 to 2023/24 in line with the updated legislation to assist in the management of COVID-19 related pressures. Contributions towards the deficit will be made by the Mayoral Police and Crime Commissioner Precept and Mayoral General Precept (including Fire Services) in proportion to their 2021/22 precepts.
v) The base budget assumptions as set out in the Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS) as detailed in Annex A to the report.
w) The budget gap for the two years 2022/23, £11.12m and 2023/24, £10.30m.
x) The recurrent budget gap caused by the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to continue into 2022/23 and is estimated that £7.1m will be met from reserves.
y) That the Capital Programme for 2021/22, 2022/23 and 2023/24 is to be set at an indicative £184.37m, £144.13m and £86.90m respectively (indicative at this stage as a number of capital grants are not yet known).
z) That the Council Tax figures included in the report for the Mayoral Police and Crime Commissioner Precept and Mayoral General Precept (including Fire Services) are the recommended provisional amounts pending their formal approval.
Publication date: 22/02/2021
Date of decision: 17/02/2021
Decided at meeting: 17/02/2021 - Executive