Issue - decisions
Draft Prioritising Resources to Deliver Better Outcomes - 2022/23 to 2026/27
The Cabinet considered a report of the Executive Director (Finance and Resources) presenting the draft General Fund Revenue Budget for 2022/23.
1. That it be noted that the final version of the updated Financial Sustainability Strategy 2022-2032 will be available for consideration in February 2022 (Appendix 1 to the submitted report).
2. That it be noted that a Medium Term Financial Strategy for 2022/23 – 2026/27 will be available for consideration in February 2022 and the draft Medium Term Financial Forecast and estimated Earmarked Reserves Balances up to 2026/27 (Annexes 1 and 2 to Appendix 2 to the submitted report), be endorsed.
3. That the draft Section 151 Officer’s statement on the robustness of the proposed budget, the adequacy of the Council’s reserves and the Council’s Reserves Strategy (Appendix 3 to the report), be noted.
4. That the appropriation of the sums to earmarked reserves totalling £2.675M (Appendix 4 to the report), be endorsed.
5. That the appropriation of the sums from earmarked reserves totalling £4.494M, which includes £2.500M that was previously approved to support the budget in 2021/22 and is now requested to be used to support the estimated budget gap for 2022/23 instead. (Appendix 4 to the report), be endorsed.
6. That a General Fund Budget Requirement for 2022/23 of £140.288M and Council Tax Requirement of £91.844M (Appendix 5) and any required commencement of consultation, statutory or otherwise, be endorsed.
7. That it be noted that the 2022/23 revenue budget has been prepared on the basis of using £1.5 million from accumulated Collection Fund surpluses for the core budget to allow for a smoothing of the budget gap across the next four financial years.
8. That a Council Tax increase of 3.99% for the Southend-on-Sea element of the Council Tax for 2022/23, being 1.99% for general use and 2.0% for Adult Social Care, be endorsed.
9. That it be noted that the position of the Council’s preceptors is to be determined:
· Essex Police – no indication of Council Tax position
· Essex Fire & Rescue Services – no indication of Council Tax position
· Leigh-on-Sea Town Council – proposed Band D precept increase of 0.53%;
10. That no Special Expenses be charged other than the Leigh-on-Sea Town Council precept for 2022/23, be endorsed.
11. That the proposed General Fund revenue budget investment of £13.672M (Appendix 6 to the report), be endorsed.
12. That the proposed General Fund revenue budget savings and income generation initiatives for 2022/23 of £5.087M (Appendix 7 to the report), be endorsed.
13. That the proposed future outline Budget Transformation Programme 2023/24 – 2026/27 (Appendix 8 to the report), be noted.
14. That the proposed range of fees and charges for 2022/23 (Appendix 9 to the report), be endorsed.
15. That the Dedicated Schools Grant budget and its relevant distribution as recommended by the Education Board (Appendix 10 to the report), be endorsed.
16. That the Capital Investment Strategy for 2022/23 to 2026/27 (Appendix 11 to the report) and the Capital Investment Policy (Annex 1 to Appendix 11 to the report), be endorsed.
17. That the new schemes and additions to the Capital Investment Programme for the period 2022/23 to 2026/27 totalling £12.6M for the General Fund (Appendix 12 to the report) and new schemes subject to viable business cases totalling £33.9M (£15.5M for the General Fund and £18.4M for the Housing Revenue Account) (Appendix 12 to the report), be endorsed.
18. That the proposed changes to the current Capital Investment Programme that were considered for approval as part of the Resourcing Better Outcomes – Financial Performance Report – Period 8 (Appendix 13 to the report), be noted.
19. That the proposed Capital Investment Programme for 2022/23 to 2026/27 of £119.8M to be delivered by the Council and £51.3M to be delivered by Subsidiary Companies, Partners and Joint Ventures (Appendix 14 to the report) of which £51.1M is supported by external funding, be endorsed.
20. That the Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP) Policy for 2022/23 (Appendix 15 to the report) and the prudential indicators (Appendix 16 to the report), be endorsed.
21. That the operational boundary and authorised limits for borrowing for 2022/23 are set at £385M and £395M respectively (Appendix 16 to the report), be endorsed.
Reason for Decision
To comply with statutory requirements and the relevant Local Authority codes of practice. Also, to ensure the budgets align to and enable the delivery of the Council’s ambition and desired outcomes or to enhance the Council’s infrastructure.
Billing authorities are required by law to complete and approve their budget and set a council tax before 11 March immediately prior to the start of the financial year on 1 April.
Note: This is an Executive Function save that approval of the final budget following Cabinet on 15th February 2020 is a Council Function
Referred direct to all three scrutiny committees
Cabinet Members: Cllr Gilbert and Cllr Collins