Agenda item

Draft Revenue and Capital Budget Proposals 2022/23 to 2024/25


HC 60/21         

Consideration was given to a report that set out proposals for the Council to achieve a balanced Revenue and Capital Budget for 2022/23.


In discussion, reference was made to:-


(a)   the annual staff pay award.  Officers confirmed that, whilst the final settlement was still subject to negotiations, they were content that the budget allocation that was proposed to be set aside was sufficient.  Whilst acknowledging that there would be additional cost pressures in relation to rising energy and travel costs, officers were similarly content that adequate provisions had been included within the draft budget proposals. The Section 151 Officer confirmed that there was a budget provision of £70,000 for inflation on goods and services;


(b)   the proportion of total Council Tax that was actually the Borough Council precept (11% of the overall bill).  A Member felt that, as the collecting authority, there were a number of public misconceptions over the Borough Council precept.  As a result, it was felt that there was a need for the Communications Team to produce and publish messaging at the time of annual billing in an attempt to counter these misconceptions.


It was then RECOMMENDED that Council:


1.    increase Council Tax for 2022/23 by £5 (Band D of £246.63 for 2022/23 – an increase of 10 pence per week or £5 per year – equating to a 2.07% increase);


2.    approve the financial pressures (as shown in Appendix A of the presented agenda report) amounting to £689,000;


3.    approve the net contributions to Earmarked Reserves of £209,350 (as shown in Appendix A of the presented agenda report), including the proposed use of £75,000 from the Business Rates Retention Earmarked Reserve (as set out in section 3.21 of the presented agenda report);


4.    transfer £162,850 into a Financial Stability Earmarked Reserve in 2022/23, to be available for any future financial pressures from future local government funding reforms and any other budget pressures;


5.    use £150,000 of New Homes Bonus funding in 2022/23 to fund the Revenue Base Budget (as set out in section 3.30 of the presented agenda report);


6.    allocate £172,084 of the New Homes Bonus grant allocation for 2022/23 to an Affordable Housing Earmarked Reserve as a one-of contribution for 2022/23 as set out in sections 3.30 to 3.31 of the presented agenda report;


7.    approve the savings of £221,000 (as set out in Appendix A of the published agenda report);


8.    set its Total Net Expenditure for 2022/23 at £7,769,695 (as set out in Appendix B of the presented agenda report);


9.    approve the proposed Capital Programme Proposals for 2022/23 of £835,000 and the proposed financing of the Capital Programme (as set out at Appendix D of the presented agenda report);


10.  continue to have a minimum level of £900,000 within Unearmarked Reserves (as set out in the Medium Term Financial Strategy in September 2021), but an operating level of a minimum of £1.25 million;


11.  note the level of reserves (as detailed within the published agenda report) and the assessment of their adequacy and the robustness of budget estimates.  (NB, this is a requirement of Part 2 of the Local Government Act 2003); and


12.  note that the Council will continue to be part of the Business Rates Pool for 2022/23 (as outlined at Section 3.23 of the presented agenda report).


Supporting documents: