To receive Report No. 4/2019 from the Strategic Director for Resources.
Members are requested to bring their copy, distributed under separate cover.
· The above report was presented to Cabinet on 15 January 2019 and the recommendations within the report were approved.
· Cabinet has requested that Scrutiny review and comment on proposals before the Cabinet on 19 February 2019 so as to inform the decision-making process.
· The report and its proposals may be amended following the outcome of the Scrutiny Panel. Scrutiny is therefore asked to consider the report and provide feedback to the Portfolio Holder and Director.
Report No. 4/2019 was received from the Strategic Director for Resources, the purpose of which was to present a draft budget for consultation prior to the budget being formally set in February 2019.
Mr Della Rocca provided a presentation on the draft budget for Members.
During discussion the following points were noted:
i. The Government believed Rutland could generate most of its income from, Council Tax and therefore the Council received less funding per head compared to other Unitary Council’s. When Government declared Rutland County Council’s spending power as c£35million, most of the funding came from Rutland’s Council Tax.
ii. Directors and Heads of Service at the Council had been through every line of the budget to identify savings.
iii. 48% of the budget went into social services where the Council had a statutory requirement to protect and support vulnerable residents
iv. Additional funding had been received nationally from Government for the improvement of the highways network. Mrs Stephenson confirmed that annual ongoing road assessments would be completed and funding would be focused on areas which would have the longest impact. A paper regarding the Highways Capital Maintenance Programme would be received by Cabinet in March 2019.
v. There had been roughly a 75% take-up of the Green Waste Bin collection service.
vi. Capital funding could be spent on academies to facilitate the creation of school places as the Council had a statutory duty to make sure there were enough school places within the county.
vii. The £455k allocated to schools maintenance was given to schools as and when needed.
viii. The Government’s plan to give 100% of business rates to Local Authorities would require primary legislation, which was unlikely to happen until 2020 and would result in grant funding being reduced and replaced with retained business rates.
ix. The Government were reviewing the new homes bonus to ensure incentives were given to encourage house building.
x. No reductions in the budget were being made to frontline services.
xi. Money had been saved by putting more focus on Early Intervention, rather than waiting for people coming to the Council for help.
xii. It was noted that Councillor Waller had forwarded questions to the Strategic Director for Resources. These questions with answers would be appended to the minutes.
xiii. The Collection Fund was a statutory requirement. The Council collected council tax on behalf of the Leicestershire Police and the Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service which was then distributed to them.
That the Panel NOTED the report.