Financial Position September 2019 - Report for the Year Ending 31st March 2020
Councillor Joyce Plummer, Portfolio Holder Resources, reported on the financial spending of the Council up to the end of September 2019 and the financial forecast outturn position for the Accounting Year 2019/20. Members considered a table within the report, which set out the core financial details.
Councillor Tony Dobson enquired about the likely impact of the 30% discount in rental charges within the indoor market approved under Agenda Item 8. The Leader acknowledged that it was easier for some services to break even than others. The challenges faced by the Market Hall were as a result of changing shopping habits. However, the building was a grand centre-piece to the town centre and the long term vision was for it to at least break even. Councillor Paul Cox highlighted Paragraphs 3.5 – 3.8 of the report at Agenda Item 8, which addressed some of the financial issues raised.
Approval of the report was not deemed a key decision.
Reasons for Decision
The spend for the first 6 months of the financial year to the end of September 2019 is £5,663,000 compared to a Budget of £5,744,000 giving a positive variance of £81,000 over the first 6 months of the year.
The current forecast spend to the end of the financial year in March 2020 is £10,913,000 compared to a Budget of £10,993,000. This forecast produces a positive variance of £80,000 by the end of the financial year. There are small adverse forecasts for Planning & Transportation, Policy & Corporate Governance, Regenerations and Property Services and Environmental Services, with positive variances elsewhere producing an overall surplus.
Environmental Services are predicting a year end adverse variance of £75,000. This stems from salary savings of £11,000 on Food Safety, Waste Services income down £9,000 and £1,000 of additional miscellaneous costs offset by £103,000 of positive variance against Budgets on Recycling and £15,000 of salary savings. Parks & Cemeteries are predicting an adverse variance of £15,000 due to a predicted shortfall in income of £36,000 less £13,000 saved on salary costs and £6,000 of other savings while the Cemetery and Crematorium Service are forecasting £5,000 more income and £3,000 net additional spend by the year end. The Town Centre and Market Halls Budget is indicating an overall adverse variance of £177,000, comprising £190,000 reduced income at the Market Hall and income from CCTV down by £10,000 less £12,000 of salary savings and £11,000 of miscellaneous cost savings.
Culture & Leisure Services
Culture and Leisure Services are indicating a positive variance of £25,000 due to £30,000 of savings on leisure budgets less £5,000 additional net expenditure at the Haworth Art Gallery.
Planning & Transportation
Planning & Transportation are predicting an adverse variance for the year of £38,000. This is due to a predicted shortfall in income compared to budget on Building Control of £65,000 and additional salary expenditure in this area of £21,000. Elsewhere on the Budget there are £23,000 of staff savings and £46,000 of additional income less £21,000 of miscellaneous additional expenditure.
Regeneration & Property Services
Regeneration & Property Services are predicting an adverse variance of £89,000 at year-end with salary costs up by £63,000 over the year compared to budget and expected additional costs of £56,000, less £30,000 of additional income.
Policy & Corporate Governance
Policy & Corporate Governance are predicting an adverse variance of £134,000. This stems from salary savings of £78,000 less the Corporate Savings Target for the year of £165,000, predicted increases of £100,000 on Housing Benefit Costs, along with £10,000 of additional miscellaneous costs less £63,000 of additional income.
Non Service Items
The current estimate for the year is a positive variance of £389,000.
There were no alternative options considered or reasons proposed for rejection
Resolved - That Cabinet notes the report and asks Corporate Management Team to continue to reduce costs and increase income over the remaining months of the financial year.