Agenda item

2017/18 Revenue & Capital Outturn and 2018/19 Budget Update

Decision:

Resolved that

 

(a)      the outturn for 2017/18 be noted; and

 

(b)      the early budget update for 2018/19 be noted.

Minutes:

(Link to Council Priorities: All)

 

The Portfolio Holder for Resources introduced the report and updated Members on the Revenue and Capital Outturn for 2017/18 and the 2018/19 in-year budget.

 

The Portfolio Holder reported that the Council had met the new requirement to issue the Statement of Accounts by the end of May and also noted that the collection rates for Council Tax and Business rates were at around 99%.

 

Members noted that in February 2017 the Council had approved the 2017/18 net budget for council tax setting purposes at £16.4 million.  As a result of variations and other changes in the anticipated spend, a revised forecast figure had been reported in February 2018 which, after taking account of the movements in provisions, had predicted an expenditure in line with the approved budget.  The underspend at the time of the revised estimate had been earmarked to fund the purchase of investment property.  The actual outturn position was broadly in line with the revised forecast.

 

The overall position for the General Fund balance showed it remaining at

£4.0 million, the required level set by the Council in accordance with the Medium and Long Term Financial Strategy.

 

The Portfolio Holder reported that the underspend of £1 million was due to various factors including employee related; operating expenses; and income (including new property purchases).

 

With regard to Capital outturn, the position was £48 million, an underspend of £11 million compared to the revised programme of £59 million.  The Cabinet noted that in the majority of cases, the underspends had been due to a large number of projects being rephased into 2018/19.

 

The Portfolio Holder reported that due to circumstances beyond the control of the contractors and officers, two capital projects would exceed the approved expenditure.  The two projects affected were the works in respect of the Brooklands Culvert and Drewitt’s Court car park.  In respect of the Brooklands Culvert, it was noted that due to the discovery of extensive asbestos, the cost of the project had increased from £286,000 to a completed cost of £341,355.  It was proposed that the increase in costs of £55,355 would be funded from the Suitable Accessible Natural Green Space (SANGS) contributions received.

 

In respect of Drewitt’s Court, it was noted that due to the challenging works required and the discovery of extensive asbestos on the ground floor, the cost of the project had increased from £1,500,000 to £1,605,333.  As there were still 6 weeks of work left before the project was completed, it was proposed that the figure now allocated to the project be £1,615,000.  The Portfolio Holder reported that the additional £115,000 would be funded from the planned Car Park Maintenance Reserve contribution for 2018/19.

 

With regard to significant issues on closing the 2017/18 Accounts, the Portfolio Holder highlighted that two issues had been identified, namely Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL); and Provisions, the details of which were outlined in the report.

 

With regard to Drewitts Court, the Portfolio Holder for Environment and Transport reiterated that when dealing with premises that are of a certain age there was uncertainty of what might be found when works commenced.  He therefore suggested that when looking at projects like this in the future, perhaps a higher contingency fund should be built in especially for properties from the 1960s and 1970s when hazardous material was widely used in general construction.  The Portfolio Holder for Resources agreed that this suggestion should be considered in the future.

 

Resolved that

 

(a)      the outturn for 2017/18 be noted; and

 

(b)      the early budget update for 2018/19 be noted.

 

Recommended: that an increase in the approved budget for the works on Drewitts Court (£115,000) and Brooklands Culvert (£55,000) be approved and funded from the Car Parking Maintenance Reserve and Suitable Accessible Natural Green Space (SANGS) contributions respectively.

Supporting documents: