Issue - meetings
Financial Monitoring - Revenue (Month 7)
Meeting: 20/12/2012 - Cabinet (Item 146)
The Interim Director of Finance reported upon the revenue position for 2012/13 as at Month 7 (October 2012). His report identified the latest financial projections and prioritised the risks for ongoing management actions, to ensure the year-end position would deliver the budget allocated.
He highlighted a major risk which had just emerged concerning the reliability of fees and charges income, going back many years. It was clear from a system review of Social Services debt collection, that the process to enforce the payment of amounts owing was deficient. The process only consisted of the production of reminder letters, with no recourse to the courts and enforcement to ensure payment. Officers had urgently put in place a system to ensure ongoing income was recovered, by implementing agreed policy, and to establish the exact size of the unrecoverable debt.
On a motion by Councillor Phil Davies, seconded by Councillor McLachlan, it was -
(1) That Cabinet notes that:
(i) At Month 7 (October 2012), the full year forecast projects a potential General Fund overspend of £8.7m;
(ii) A review of over/underspends and Earmarked Reserves has been undertaken, reported to the November 29th Cabinet and incorporated into the Interim Director’s report;
(iii)there were no rejected freeze items in the month. Appendix 7 to the report listed those items considered as part of the process.
(2) Cabinet is extremely concerned at the reference in paragraph 2.14 of the Interim Director of Finance’s report concerning the failure of the Council to actively recover Social Services debt over a number of years.
(3) Cabinet asks the Chief Executive to commission an urgent external independent investigation to establish:
1. The circumstances leading up to this state of affairs.
2. The amount of money which has not been collected and how much might still be recoverable.
3. The length of time this practice has been in operation.
4. The reasons why this practice was allowed to continue.
5. Who knew of and authorised this approach to debt management?
6. What lessons can be learnt to ensure there is no recurrence?
(4) That Cabinet requests that a report be brought back in a month and an update provided at the 24 January Cabinet.
Meeting: 08/11/2012 - Cabinet (Item 121)
A report by the Interim Director of Finance informed the Cabinet of the current position regarding the Council’s 2012-13 to 2014-15 Capital Programme. The Interim Director’s report reflected the following:
· the re-profiled 2012-13 capital programme budget;
· the expenditure to date, which continued to be less than it should be;
· a request for a revision to the Capital Programme to reflect slippage of £10m of schemes into the 2013/14 Financial Year;
· a request for an increase in the Programme for schemes requiring no unsupported borrowing;
· the projected outturn figures for 2012-13, which suggested an under spend of £12m on the revised programme; and
· the current funding of the Programme and its future affordability, which was subject to a review.
Appendix 1 to the report detailed Capital Freeze Projects considered during October 2012.
Councillor Phil Davies welcomed the work being undertaken to ensure a more robust Capital Programme. He also welcomed:
(a) the schemes that had been supported;
(b) the Capital Steering Group that had been established; and
(c) the work to maximise capital receipts.
Items involving capital and revenue would continue to be scrutinised when they were put forward.
(1) the Cabinet:
(a) agrees the revised Capital Programme of £65.609m;
(b) agrees slippage in the programme of £10.025m from 2012/13 to 2013/14;
(c) agrees an increase to the programme of £0.855m for Regeneration, Housing and Planning schemes which do not require financing from unsupported borrowing and in respect of use of a Children and Young People Aiming High for Disabled Children grant of £0.3057m;
(d) notes the spend to date at month 6 of £14.3m, which represents 21.8% of the revised capital budget, with 50% of the financial year having elapsed;
(e) notes the work of the Capital Steering Group to detail the schedule of sites to validate the estimate of capital receipts; and
(f) notes that a future report will include proposals to cease or reduce schemes arising from a review of the current capital programme.
(2) the Cabinet also agrees the rejected freeze items set out in Appendix 1 in the columns ‘rejected’ totalling £899,610 as evidenced in paragraph 2.15 of the report.