Agenda item

Medium Term Financial Plan

Report of the Chief Officers Executive.


The Leader introduced the report of the Chief Officers Executive (previously circulated) requesting that consideration be given to the Medium Term Financial Plan (MTFP) for 2021/22 to 2024/25 (also previously circulated) for consultation including setting a budget and council tax increase for 2021/22.


The submitted report stated that over the last decade, the Council had faced significant challenges following the economic downturn and reduction in public sector spending;  to date the Council had been successful in responding to those challenges but there were still financial pressures to be faced, particularly in respect of a growing elderly population, pressure in the children’s social care sector and the economic impact of Covid-19; a number of funding streams had been announced, in the 2020 Spending Review; at the time of writing the report, the Local Government Finance Settlement (LGFS) had not been announced and that, as a result, a number of assumptions in regard to funding had been made; and that any changes to funding levels following the announcement would be reported to Cabinet in February.


It was reported that the Council undertook a significant consultation exercise in 2016, following an in-depth and detailed review of all services which resulted in the agreement of a Core Offer budget which allowed for a small futures fund allocated to discretionary services; in subsequent MTFP’s the Council had agreed to use unallocated balances of £6.5m to invest in five areas which held great value to the community; the Core Offer remained challenging with some significant pressures arising in social care and the ongoing impact of Covid-19; and that assuming the funding streams were received, the Council would still deliver the agreed balanced plan whilst retaining usable balances of £3.504m.


Details of the projected expenditure and income, budget pressures and savings, schedule of fees and charges, assumptions used to prepare estimates, projected Revenue Outturn 2020/21 and assessment of risk balances, were also appended to the submitted report.


Following a question by a Member in respect of the Council’s reserves, the Assistant Director Resources confirmed that the Council had sufficient reserves.


RESOLVED - That the Revenue Medium Term Financial Plan (MTFP), as set out in Appendix 7 of the submitted report, be approved for consultation, including:-


(a)    a Council tax increase of 1.99 per cent plus a three per cent adult social care precept to fund social care for 2021/22;


(b)    the Schedule of Charges, as set out in Appendix 3 of the submitted report; and


(c)    the Futures Fund continuation into 2024/25, as set out in paragraph 56 of the submitted report.


REASONS - (a)  The Council must set a budget for the next financial year.


(b)  To enable the Council to continue to plan services and finances over the medium term.


(c)  To ensure decisions can be made in a timely manner.

Supporting documents: