Agenda item

Financial management report - financial outturn report 2019/20


The Leader introduced the report which set out the revenue and capital projected outturn position for 2019/20, drawing attention to the revenue underspend of £64,188 which was higher than the expected projection in March 2020.  He praised the efforts of Housing Services in achieving a reduction in the overspend expected from March to June 2020 in homelessness, as highlighted at paragraph 3.2 on page 20 of the report.    The Leader drew attention to the reduction in car park revenue and planning fee income on page 21.


The Leader highlighted the variances at Table 2 on page 22 of the report, paying particular attention to housing which had cost more than the anticipated budget set in 2019.  The Leader stressed the importance of the revenue received from the Princes Street Retail Park.  He noted the rollovers of £357k which were agreed by the previous administration or were statutory rollovers.


The Leader referred to the costs incurred in defending two public appeals as detailed in paragraph 3.3 on page 20 and said that the costs were not as a result of an executive decision but made by Planning Committee in its democratic process.  He added that the reduction in income by Section 106 Agreements was not an executive decision.


In referring to Table 11 on pages 48 to 49 of the report, the Leader reported the success of the Special Projects Fund and the benefits to the local community.


The Leader advised that there was a reduction in the Kent Pool Economic Development Business Rates Reserve of £739k and £776k increase in the business rate, not £758k and £757k as in the report at paragraph 3.10 on page 24.  He advised that there was £800k available for corporate priorities and improvements to the town centres were a priority.


In reporting healthy reserves at Table 10 on pages 43 – 47, the Leader said the future would be challenging.  He drew Members’ attention that The Swallows Leisure Centre roof would need replacing, as at paragraph 3.26 on page 27 of the report.  The Leader spoke positively about the projects on Table 12 on pages 50 to 54 and said they were initiated by the previous and current new administration.


Finally, the Leader thanked the staff in Financial Services, particularly the Financial Services Manager and said that the Council’s financial position was more sound than many other Councils.


In response to a question from the Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee, the Leader explained that the Council had reserves of over £23million and the estimated £4.1million referred to in press releases as a result of the financial effect of Covid-19 was from the Revenue Budget.  He said Government income would provide some of the deficit and the balance would be funded from the General Fund. The Chief Financial Officer advised that there was more detail in this report than previously, the report was transparent and he explained how the funding gap would be filled.  The Chairman of the Scrutiny Committee said that he hoped Scrutiny Committee would consider the report in the near future.


In response to a question from a Member, the Leader advised that the cost of replacing The Swallows roof was far in excess that the insurance would cover.


A Member clarified that the two High Court appeals for Barton Hill Drive, Minster were executive decisions.




(1)  That the revenue underspend of £64,188 be noted.

(2)  That the revenue service rollovers of £190,630 and the setting up of new reserves as set out in in Appendix I Table 9 be noted.

(3)  That the uninsured losses regarding the roof replacement at the Swallows Leisure Centre will be met from borrowing in 2020/21 be noted.

(4)  To delegate to the Chief Financial Officer the allocation of uncommitted underspends to reserve funds.

(5)  That the capital underspend of £4,937,473 and expenditure of £19,097,577 as detailed in paragraph 3.19 and Appendix I Table 12 be noted.

(6)  That the approval of the capital rollovers of £5,263,936 as

detailed in Appendix I Table 13 be noted.

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