{meta} Agenda for Children's Scrutiny Committee on Tuesday, 23rd January, 2018, 10.30 am

Agenda and minutes

Venue: Committee Suite - County Hall

Contact: Stephanie Lewis 01392 382486  Email: stephanie.lewis@devon.gov.uk

Webcast: View the webcast

Note No. Item




Minutes of the Children’s Scrutiny Committee meeting held on 16 November 2017 (previously circulated).

Additional documents:


RESOLVEDthat the minutes of the Children’s Scrutiny Committee meeting held on 16 November 2017 be signed as a correct record.



Items Requiring Urgent Attention

Items which in the opinion of the Chair should be considered at the meeting as matters of urgency.

Additional documents:


There was no item raised as a matter of urgency.



Public Participation

Members of the public may make representations/presentations on any substantive matter listed in the published agenda for this meeting, as set out hereunder, relating to a specific matter or an examination of services or facilities provided or to be provided.

Additional documents:


There were no oral representations received at the meeting from a member of the public.



Budget 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 555 KB

Budget 2018/19


Overall Approach


The 2018/19 budget proposals will be scrutinised with consideration of relevant service area budgets by individual Scrutiny Committees with the Corporate Infrastructure and Regulatory Services Scrutiny Committee considering both its own budget responsibilities as well as any issues raised by the Children’s Scrutiny Committee and also the Health and Adult Care Scrutiny Committee, to produce an overarching series of recommendations.


This approach will enable all Scrutiny Members to critique, question and challenge the budget proposals across services, to better understand the implications of the budget proposals across the Council and to make effective recommendations to Cabinet and the Council. 


The proceedings of all Scrutiny Committees will be webcast and publicised through normal channels including Twitter and other social media.


The Council must have full regard to and consider the impact of any proposals in relation to equalities prior to making any decisions, as set out in equality impact assessments, and any identified significant risks and mitigation action required.


Public Participation


Additionally there will be an opportunity for members of the public to address each Scrutiny Committee meeting and make oral representations/presentations on any matter relating to the proposed budget, in line with the public participation scheme.


This Meeting


At this and other Scrutiny Committees in the current cycle, Members are asked to identify salient issues within each Committee’s  areas of responsibility, to examine the general thrust of the budget and take an overview of priorities and prospects.


At this meeting Chief Officers / Heads of Services will report, inter alia, on:


·         the Cabinet’s Target Budget for services/suite of services;

·         how that compares to the target figure for 2017/18;

·         the likely implications of the 2018/19 target for individual areas of service (e.g. in percentage terms compared to current levels) and how those areas have been prioritised;

·         any comparisons between the current year and next year’s proposals for the major service areas, to illustrate the scale of change within those activities and how the budget has been allocated across services in those years (to illustrate changes of emphasis or priority);

·         any “alternative delivery models” or other initiatives contemplated for given services and how it is thought that these may reduce costs; and

·         impact assessments undertaken in relation to the draft budget.


Report and Budget 2018/19 Impact Assessment


Joint Report of the County Treasurer and Chief Officer for Children’s Services (CT/18/03) on the proposed budget for Children’s Service Area for 2018/19, attached.


[NB: An overview of the impact assessments for all service areas entitled ‘Budget 2018/19 Impact Assessment’ has also been made available to all Members of the Council in order that Scrutiny Committees may have access to all necessary equality impact assessments undertaken as part of the budget’s preparation.  The document will also be available at:



Members are requested to familiarise themselves with its contents, retaining it for future meetings accepting that this is a dynamic process and individual assessments may necessarily be updated with time.  Members of the Council must have full regard to and consider  ...  view the full agenda text for item 35.

Additional documents:


Revenue Budget 2018/19 and Capital Programme for 2018/19 to 2022/23.


The Committee noted that the proposed budget for the 2018/19 financial year would be scrutinised by individual Scrutiny Committees, with an overview of those issues arising being further debated by the Corporate Infrastructure and Regulatory Services Committee as well as draft budget proposals within the Committees own remit, providing an opportunity for Members to comment on proposals for the Council’s Budget in its entirety and also the Chairs of both the Children’s Scrutiny Committee and Health and Adult Care Scrutiny Committee attending and presenting, as required.


This would follow the opportunity for individual Scrutiny Committees – at this meeting – to have an initial overview of the budget proposals and examine them to identify any specific issues or areas of interest that might be considered at the Corporate Infrastructure and Regulatory Services Committee for incorporation into any recommendations to Cabinet and Council.


The Committee then considered the joint report of the County Treasurer and the Chief Officer for Children’s Services (CT/18/03) on the provisional financial settlement made by Government within the current and anticipated public sector funding regime and the spending targets set by the Cabinet for each service area which included inflation, commitment and service prioritisation reductions.


The Cabinet, at its meeting of 13th December 2017, had set Revenue Budget targets for 2018/19 which totalled £477.391 millions.  This included funding for budget pressures of £28.593 millions that mainly related to additional expenditure to allow for service growth to cater for demographic changes such as increased children and adult service users and unavoidable cost pressures. Savings and income initiatives of £20.842 millions were required to set a balanced budget. The target for Adult Care and Health also included £10.148 millions in relation to the One-off Improved Better Care Fund grant announced by the Chancellor in March 2017.


The announcement by Government on the Local Government Finance Settlement for 2018/19 was made on the 19th December 2017. The 2016/17 local government finance settlement previously announced Core Spending Power figures for the four year period of 2016/17 to 2019/20 and the Provisional Settlement for 2018/19 confirmed the Core Funding figures were at the expected level of £115.2 millions.  There were however, other changes in relation to the proposal to reduce the Rural Services Delivery Grant in 2018/19 from £65m to £50m which was now not going ahead, with the grant remaining at the current level.  Government had also decided not to go ahead with proposed changes to the New Homes Bonus Scheme and there was a change to the annual Business Rates inflationary increase from Retail Price Index (RPI) to Consumer Price Index (CPI), effective from 2018/19, meaning a reduction to Business Rates received by Local Authorities as part of Core Funding.  


The Committee were reminded that its consideration of the draft Children’s Services budget was just part of the process of setting the County Council’s budget which, following this meeting, would culminate in the Cabinet on 9 February 2018 formulating a  ...  view the full minutes text for item 35.