Agenda and minutes

Executive - Tuesday, 16th February, 2021 6.30 pm, NEW

Venue: Microsoft Teams

Contact: Democratic Services  01527 64252 (ext 3268)

Media

Items
No. Item

73.

Apologies

Minutes:

An apology for absence was received on behalf of Councillor Mike Rouse.

 

 

74.

Declarations of Interest

To invite Councillors to declare any Disclosable Pecuniary Interests and / or Other Disclosable Interests they may have in items on the agenda, and to confirm the nature of those interests.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

 

 

75.

Leader's Announcements

Minutes:

The Leader advised that the Overview and Scrutiny Committee had pre-scrutinised the Medium Term Financial Plan 2021/22 to 2023/24 at a meeting held on 11th February 2021.  However, the Committee had made no recommendations on the subject for the consideration of the Executive Committee.

 

Members were reminded that a meeting of the Executive Committee was due to take place on Monday 22nd February 2021 immediately before Council.  This would provide Members with an opportunity to consider the Council Tax resolutions.

 

 

76.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 398 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED that

 

the minutes of the meeting of the Executive Committee held on Tuesday, 19th January 2021 be approved as a true and correct record and signed by the Chair.

 

 

77.

Pay Policy Statement 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 149 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Financial and Customer Services presented the Pay Policy Statement 2021/22.  The Committee was advised that the report had to be prepared each year and outlined the different pay scales of staff employed by the authority, from the Chief Executive to the lowest paid staff.

 

RECOMMENDED that

 

the Pay Policy be approved.

 

 

78.

Medium Term Financial Plan 2021/22 to 2024/25 (including the capital programme and Housing Revenue Account) pdf icon PDF 789 KB

The Medium Term Financial Plan 2021/22 to 2024/25 is due to be pre-scrutinised at a meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee scheduled to take place on Thursday, 11th February 2021.  As this meeting will take place after the publication of the main agenda for the Executive Committee meeting, any recommendations from the Overview and Scrutiny Committee on this subject will be reported for the Executive Committee’s consideration in a supplementary pack.

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Financial and Customer Services presented the Medium Term Financial Plan 2021/22 to 2023/24.  During the presentation of this report the following matters were highlighted for Members’ consideration:

 

·                The preparation of the budget had been really challenging as it had taken place during a global pandemic and at a time of significant uncertainty regarding local authority finances.

·                The Council could increase Council Tax by 2.99 per cent or £5.  Redditch Borough Council had opted to increase Council Tax by £5 as this would result in a slightly higher return for the authority.

·                There had been a gap in the budget for the 2021/22 financial year which had needed to be addressed when balancing the budget.

·                The proposed budget would result in a return of £44,000 to balances in 2021/22.  However, there remained a gap in place for 2022/23 and 2023/24 which would need to be addressed moving forward.

·                The Council had received a significant amount of grant funding from the Government to help manage the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the authority’s financial position.  A large proportion of this grant funding would be allocated to supporting Rubicon Leisure Limited.

·                Over £700,00 of earmarked reserves had been used to help balance the budget in 2021/22.  Members were advised that these funds could not be reused in future years.

·                The Council had received financial contributions from the New Homes Bonus (NHB), which had been unexpected, though this was only available for one year.

·                A significant contribution to balancing the budget had also been made through the Lower Tier Services Grant, though there was uncertainty about the position of this grant moving forward.

·                The budget had been balanced without falling below the minimum balances threshold for the Council.  However, there was a risk that, if a similar approach was adopted to balancing the following year’s budget, the Council could fall below those minimum levels.

·                A significant bid for capital funding had been included for Disabled Facilities Grants, though these were not funded by the Council.

·                There was also a relatively large bid for capital funding for electric vehicle charging points, though some of these costs would be offset with grant funding.

·                The position of the Housing Revenue Account (HRA) had improved considerably when compared to recent years and Officers were anticipating a return of £96,000 to balances in 2021/22.

·                The improving position of the HRA was partly as a result of the increase that the Council was now permitted to make to rents for Council properties.

·                Efficiency savings had also been achieved by the Housing Department which had had a beneficial impact on the HRA.  There had been a reduction in the turnaround time for void properties and this, together with investment in new Council houses, was resulting in an increase in rent collection for the authority.

·                There had been savings in Repairs and Maintenance in 2020/21, as there had been a focus on priority work only during the Covid-19 pandemic.  However, Officers recognised that any delayed work would still  ...  view the full minutes text for item 78.

79.

Overview and Scrutiny Committee pdf icon PDF 431 KB

There were no recommendations agreed at the meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on 18th January 2021.

 

Minutes:

Members considered the minutes of the meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on Monday, 18th January 2021 and noted that there were no outstanding recommendations requiring consideration.

 

RESOLVED that

 

the minutes of the meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on Monday, 18th January 2021 be noted.

 

 

80.

Minutes / Referrals - Overview and Scrutiny Committee, Executive Panels etc.

To receive and consider any outstanding minutes or referrals from the Overview and Scrutiny Committee, Executive Panels etc. since the last meeting of the Executive Committee, other than as detailed in the items above.

Minutes:

The Chair advised that there were no referrals from either the Overview and Scrutiny Committee or Executive Advisory Panels on this occasion.

 

 

81.

Advisory Panels - update report

Members are invited to provide verbal updates, if any, in respect of the following bodies:

 

a)    Climate Change Cross-Party Working Group – Chair, Councillor Brandon Clayton;

 

b)    Constitutional Review Working Panel – Chair, Councillor Matthew Dormer;

 

c)    Corporate Parenting Steering Group – Council Representative, Councillor Nyear Nazir;

 

d)    Member Support Steering Group – Chair, Councillor Matthew Dormer; and

 

e)    Planning Advisory Panel – Chair, Councillor Matthew Dormer.

 

Minutes:

The following verbal updates were provided in respect of the Executive Advisory Panels and external groups:

 

a)        Climate Change Cross Party Working Group – Chair, Councillor Anthony Lovell

 

Councillor Lovell advised that a lot of work was being undertaken to tackle climate change.  Officers were investigating the potential to introduce a lower carbon fleet.  Unfortunately, lower carbon vehicles tended to be more expensive than standard vehicles, though could have a positive impact on emissions.

 

Officers were also reviewing the potential to introduce electric vehicle charging points throughout the Borough.  In addition, assessments were being undertaken of all Council buildings in respect of decarbonisation measures that could be taken.

 

Members were asked to note that the Council needed to take into account the potential for the Council to set a lead with building in a green friendly manner through the Council house building process.  There would potentially be options to install solar panels and to explore other actions that could be taken to help reduce energy fees.

 

b)        Constitutional Review Working Party – Chair, Councillor Matthew Dormer

 

Councillor Dormer explained that a meeting of the Constitutional Review Working Party was scheduled to take place on 29th June 2021.

 

c)         Corporate Parenting Board – Council Representative, Councillor Nyear Nazir

 

Councillor Nazir confirmed that she had given her apologies for the last meeting of the Corporate Parenting Board.  It was agreed that an update should be provided in respect of the outcomes of this meeting once the minutes had been published.

 

d)        Member Support Steering Group - Chair, Councillor Matthew Dormer

 

The Committee was advised that a meeting of the Member Support Steering Group was due to take place on 2nd March 2021.

 

e)        Planning Advisory Panel - Chair, Councillor Matthew Dormer

 

Councillor Dormer confirmed that there were no meetings of the Planning Advisory Panel scheduled to take place.

 

 

Responses to Questions pdf icon PDF 193 KB