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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber

Contact: Democratic Services 

No. Item


Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 63 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 7 December 2022.


The minutes of the meeting held on 7 December 2022 were approved and signed by the Chairman as a correct record, subject to:

·         Page 8 – Cabinet Work Programme; Councillors Harry St John and Ruth Smith requested that it be noted that they had raised the item “CIL Review –Replacement of 106”.



Apologies for Absence

To receive any apologies for absence.


Apologies for absence were received from:

Councillors Langridge, Hill, Coul and Wilson.

Councillor St. John substituted for Councillor Langridge, and Councillor Doughty substituted for Councillor Hill.


Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations from Members of the Committee on any items to be considered at the meeting.


There were no declarations of interest received.


Participation of the Public

To receive any submissions from members of the public, in accordance with the

Council’s Rules of Procedure, anyone who lives in the district or who pays council tax or business rates to the Council is eligible to read a statement or express an opinion at this meeting. You can register to speak by sending your written submission of no more than 750 words to [email protected], by no later than 10.00am on the working day before the meeting.


There was no public participation at this meeting.



Financial Performance Report 2022/23 Quarter 3 pdf icon PDF 800 KB


To provide details of the Council’s Financial Performance at

the end of Quarter 3, 2022/23.



That the Quarter 3, 2022/23 Financial Performance be noted.




The Chair announced that the Financial Performance Report 2022/23  Quarter 3 would be considered first followed by 2022/24 Budget and Medium Term Financial Strategy.

The Chief Finance Officer Elizabeth Griffiths introduced the Finance Performance Report for Quarter 3 2022/23.  The results this year showed inflationary increases that are reflected in the budget next year.

The points raised were;

  • Challenges faced by residents – cost of living, food, inflation and energy prices un-expectantly going up.
  • Challenges faced by businesses – running costs including energy, fuel and inflation un-expectantly going up.
  • Inflationary pressures that are built into the budget next year are being experienced this year.
  • 2023/24 budget next year have increased expectations due to challenges in the year ahead.
  • Staffing and departmental pressures due to loss of funding previously received from grants given over the Covid period. 
  • Unbudgeted items such as additional costs to cover member allowances, £20,000 on Council Tax leaflet and additional staffing costs in Democratic Services.


The Chair invited comments and questions from the committee.

The Councillors queried car parking and loss of income. The Chief Finance Officer explained that the revenue is based on fines. The car parking team had been reduced to 3 members of staff who focused on both on-street car parking and off-street. The County Council are due to take on-street back and the team can focus on off-street parking. There will be a review of Car Parking which is on the Executive Work Programme with a report to come back with recommendations.

A discussion took place regarding the use of forecasting when looking at the budget. The Chief Finance officer explained that factors such as unexpected pressures for example the cost of living crisis, inflationary pressures and rise of fuel costs had driven up the budget, which were shown in the current year’s figures. The Councillors had concerns that there had not been a forecast. The Chief Finance Officer explained the budget was the focus and where needed individual areas had variances to budget that could be addressed, this was raised and discussed but due to limited resources in staffing, work had to be prioritised.

The Councillors asked for a point of note and thanked the team for the table on page 12 and asked for percentage variances to be included going forward.

The Chief Finance Officer explained that the Finance team worked with each Service area to get the best estimate of every individual line in coming year’s budget and every factor was considered.  Amendments were made through December and January resulting in almost weekly budget updates ahead of the final draft to Council in February.

The Committee discussed the following points;

  • Review of Building Control and targets. – demand for services were low due to market share and the Council are in competition with the private sector. 
  • Agile working – costs incurred but this is an investment to generate a new revenue stream. Offices in Elmfield are being freed up for outside rental to generate income.
  • There were some questions around  ...  view the full minutes text for item 40.


2023/24 Budget and Medium Term Financial Strategy pdf icon PDF 114 KB


This report provides an update on the developing budget for 2023/24. To consider:

1)    The draft base budgets for 2023/24

2)    The Medium Term Financial Strategy

3)    The response from the statutory budget consultation



That FMOS consider the latest update of the draft budget.

Additional documents:


The Chief Finance Officer Elizabeth Griffiths introduced the 2023/24 Budget and Medium Term Finance Strategy, and gave an explanation on how the paper has been presented. The Committee were asked to take into account the updated position since the budget was last considered in December. The following points were highlighted;

  • The last report highlighted the £1.8m deficit as the settlement figure was not confirmed.
  • New Homes Bonus has been extended for 1 year and is £1m less than the previous year. This is a 1 year settlement and not guaranteed to continue.
  • It is not known whether there will be a funding guarantee and funding could be lost in the future.
  • Significant inflation which has caused disproportionate pressures
  • Rates reset will not happen till at least 2025/26
  • Uncertainty on GLL income. 
  • Waste team have requested a 10% increase to their container budget which was not included in this draft but will be for Council.
  • NNDR rates calculation was later than usual this year due to late issuing of the guidance by government and then further delayed by and software upgrades. This was expected to result in another adjustment to the budget of £15,000 ahead of Council.


The Chair clarified that the budget papers presented to committee are the same set of papers to be discussed at the Executive meeting on 8 February 2023. The Revenue Budget had options of growth and no growth. The Executive would make recommendations on this paper to put to Council. So there were two versions to discuss. The Chief Finance Officer explained that both versions had been included so that members could see the impact that the proposed budget growth had in both the short and long term.

The Committee discussed the following points;

  • Fixed-term Contracts for staff created challenges for recruitment and retention of staff. The Chair asked for this to be noted as and passed to the Executive.
  • Grants were given during Covid and used for short term projects with an understanding that there was a time limit on the contract of employment. In some posts there is a possibility to extend the contract with a view to finding funding from an outside source. Where roles have ended, staff are re-deployed into other vacancies where possible.
  • Clarification that the Leisure contract contingency was cumulative within the MTFS calculation.
  • Wage settlement for Publica Staff,- the current year saw a fixed cashed increase across all payscales which averaged at 6%. The Chief Finance Officer confirmed that the difference between Publica staff and Councillors figures can been shown.
  • Costs of Members Allowances- an additional amount has been included in next year’s budget to cover uplifts not yet reflected in the budget which had caused an overspend in the current year.
  • Finance team are currently under resourced - there has been a shared request from other Publica Councils for an additional post but it was under discussion as to the exact post and further requests were expected.
  • Leisure facilities and the provision of swimming pools. Most residents  ...  view the full minutes text for item 41.


Committee Work Programme pdf icon PDF 278 KB


To provide the Committee with an updated Work Programme for 2022/2023.


That the Committee notes the work programme and provides comment where needed.



The Chair asked for comments on the Scrutiny Work Programme for 2022/23.

The Committee asked that the following items be added to the Scrutiny Work Programme;

  • Waste Service Review and Update Report
  • Leisure Centre Strategy
  • Stand-alone report from CBRE for the regeneration plan for Marriott’s Walk – due July 2023.


Committee Resolved to

1.      Note the Scrutiny Work Programme.


Executive Work Programme pdf icon PDF 140 KB


To give the Committee the opportunity to comment on the Executive Work Programme published January 2023.


That the Committee decides whether to express a view to the Executive on relevant issues in its Work Programme.



The Chair invited comments on the Executive work programme published January 2023. None were received.

Committee Resolved to

1.    Note on the Executive Work Programme.


Exclusion of the Press and Public

If the Chair wishes to exclude the press and the public from the meeting during consideration of any of the items on the exempt from publication part of the

agenda, it will be necessary for the Committee to pass a resolution in accordance

with the provisions of Paragraph 4(2)(b) of the Local Authorities (Executive

Arrangements) (Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2012 on the grounds that their presence could involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as described in specific paragraphs of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972.

The Chair may maintain the exemption if and so long as, in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.


Committee Resolved to:

1.    Pass a resolution in accordance with the provisions of Paragraph 4(2)(b) of the Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2012 on the grounds that their presence could involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as described in specific paragraphs of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972.


Briefing on the procurement of Marriotts Walk


Briefing on due diligence conducted as part of the acquisition of Marriott’s Walk



Councillors to note briefing and ask questions

Additional documents:


Frank Wilson, Group Finance Director (Publica) delivered a briefing on the procurement of Marriott’s Walk.

There was a discussion within on the briefing in respect of the regeneration aspects of the site and the business case. The Committee asked that a stand-alone report from CBRE be brought to the committee when completed (anticipated in 6 months’ time). This would be added to the Scrutiny Work Programme.

Committee Resolved to:

1.    Note the briefing.