Issue - meetings

2023/24 Budget and Medium Term Financial Plan 2023/24 to 2025/26 (Including Treasury Management Strategy and Capital Programme)

Meeting: 07/02/2023 - Executive (Item 123)

123 2023/24 Budget and Medium Term Financial Plan 2023/24 to 2025/26 (Including Treasury Management Strategy and Capital Programme) pdf icon PDF 907 KB

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The Interim Section 151 Officer presented the Medium Term Financial Plan (MTFP) 2023/24 to 2025/26 (including the Treasury Management Strategy and the Capital Programme) for the Executive Committee’s consideration. 


Members were asked to note the following when considering the report:


·             The report built on the tranche 1 savings of £1.5 million that had been agreed in November 2022.

·             An assumption had been made that the Council would agree a 2.99 per cent increase to Council Tax for 2023/24.  A report on the subject of Council Tax Resolutions would be presented for the Executive Committee’s consideration at a meeting scheduled to take place on 27th February 2023.

·             The costs to the Council arising from the pay award to staff for 2021/22 had been slightly less than previously anticipated due to staff vacancies.

·             The funding from Government for the Council represented a one-year settlement.

·             Final figures had been received from the actuaries for the local government pension contributions for staff which had been taken into account in the report. 

·             Funding had been set aside for anticipated increases to the costs of utilities, with 50 per cent allocated to the base budget and 50 per cent to earmarked reserves, the value of which would fall over the three-year period of the MTFP.  This arrangement was in place as it was anticipated that utilities costs would start to decline during the period of the plan.

·             Whilst there would be income from business rates, Officers were assuming that there would be a high level of non-payment and this had been taken into account when preparing the report.

·             There were a number of additional pressures that had been reflected in the proposed budget:

-        Refurbishment of the Council’s vehicle fleet and fuel payments.  Members were advised that there would be a need to respond to requirements set out in the Environment Act.  The costs of biofuels, compared to diesel, were increasing and this would also need to be taken into account.

-        There was a fund for apprenticeships and Officers were aiming to link this to staff grades in order to take advantage of the Government’s apprenticeship levy.

-        There was a need to fund a new Data Analyst post.  At present, there was only one member of staff at the Council trained on how to undertake this work and Officers believed that the Council’s system, Power BI, could be used more effectively.

-        There remained pressures arising from planning enforcement.

·             Council Tax collection rates for the 2022/23 financial year were at around 98 per cent and this was taken into account when calculating likely income from Council Tax for subsequent years.

·             The Corporate Management Team (CMT) had reviewed the earmarked reserves in December 2022, as there were a number of reserves that had not been used for some time.  As a consequence, a number of the reserves had been released, including funding that would be used to address the rising costs of utilities.

·             Officers were assuming that the general fund would be in a  ...  view the full minutes text for item 123