Report of the County Treasurer (CT/19/120) on the Target Budget, an update on the Local Government Settlement for forthcoming year and preparation of the budget and service expenditure targets.
This Report will follow.
(Councillors Biederman, Connett, Greenslade and Hannaford attended in accordance with Standing Order 25(2) and spoke to this item).
The Cabinet considered the Report of the County Treasurer (CT/19/120) on the Target Budgets, the current status of the provisional Local Government Settlement for the forthcoming year, preparation of the budget for 2020/2021 and affirmation of service expenditure targets, circulated prior to the meeting in accordance with regulation 7(4) of the Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Meetings and Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2012.
The Report outlined that the setting of the Budget Targets was the first step in the formal, Council wide, budget process. The Targets were set out in paragraph 3 of the Report and represented an overall increase of £31.9 millions or 6.4%.
The Cabinet also noted that the provisional Local Government Finance Settlement was due to be announced in early December but had now been delayed to an unspecified date. It was hoped that the Provisional Settlement would be received in sufficient time to report to the next meeting of Cabinet on 15th January 2020.
2019/20 had been the last year of the four-year Local Government Financial Settlement and 2020/21 was expected to be the first year of a new multi-year settlement that would contain the outcome of the Fairer Funding Review, the Business Rates reset and 75% or 100% Business Rates Retention. However, in September the Chancellor announced a one-year Spending Round badged as a ‘Roll-forward’ for Local Government with some additional funding including the SR19 Social Care Support Grant, Schools funding and SEND High Needs Block. The Fairer Funding Review along with both the Business Rates reset and Retention plans had been delayed until at least 2021/22.
Due to the unprecedented level of uncertainty around the Provisional Settlement content, and timing, there was an increased likelihood that the Targets, as set out in the Report would be amended at the Cabinet meeting on 15th January 2020.
The proposed targets set out in the report (2020/21 Budget, £000’s) were;
Adult Care & Health £252,558 (6.8%)
Children’s Services £144,345 (6.7%)
Community Health, Environment & Prosperity £39,713 (2.4%)
Corporate Services £37,100 (7.0%)
Highways, Infrastructure Development & Waste £56,508 (3.3%)
The Report, having been debated and other relevant factors as set out in the County Treasurer’s Report and/or referred to above having been considered:
it was MOVED by Councillor Barker, SECONDED by Councillor Hart, and
(a) that the delay in the announcement of the Provisional Settlement be noted;
(b) that the revenue spending targets for 2020/21, as set out in paragraph 3, be approved;
(c) that the increased likelihood of the Targets as set out in paragraph 2.6 being amended in January be noted; and
(d) that Members agree that the Capital Programme be determined by the Cabinet in February 2020.