Decision details

Budget and Medium-term Financial Strategy

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


1.            The Cabinet noted the assumptions being used in formulating the core budget for 2020/21 as indicated, with detailed budgets being formulated for Cabinet consideration on the 06th January 2020.


2.            The Cabinet noted that only 2% inflation would be added to operational budgets (other than waste and leisure contracts). They noted that having raised income and charges by 3% in line with the Office of National Statistics estimate of inflation, that the Authority would hold around 1% for specific in-year inflation and economic pressures.


3.            The Cabinet commented on the proposed list of developments as shown in Section 3 of the report and further detailed in the appendices, noting that this list included revenue, capital and loan items.


4.            The Cabinet considered whether any additional or substitute development proposals needed to be considered, particularly those that would address economic uncertainty or issues of economic and social exclusion.


5.            The Cabinet noted that the companies set up and wholly owned by the Authority were due to generate income and to repay loans from 2020/21 and the significant financial benefit that resulted from this. They noted that from 2021/22 the options available to the Cabinet in terms of their development and fiscal (taxation) policies would significantly increase.


6.            The Cabinet noted and commented on the intent to further review existing District Development Fund and Capital commitments for final verification of these items by the Cabinet on the 06th January 2020.


7.            The Cabinet commented on the intent, to stimulate continuous service improvement and the release of funds for developments, that an efficiency savings target of between 0.25% and 0.5% should be set. The figure was comparatively low (compared to other Authorities) and a full list of schemes would be put before Cabinet on 06th January 2020.


8.            Having taken account of views on the developments and how these could be funded, the Cabinet commented on the overall preferences to forming a final budget with or without a council tax increase as summarised in Section 5 of the report.


9.            The Cabinet noted the outline workplan and issues outlined in Section 6 of the report.


10.          The Cabinet noted and approved the opportunity that existed to drive forward with several schemes and incur expenditure this year, covering this expenditure by the use of District Development Funds. These projects were:


·         The North Weald Masterplan £140,000 (proposal 42);

·         Customer Service Notification System £25,000 (proposal 17);

·         Planning Approval backlog £40,000 (proposal 28); and

·         Additional working Capital for Devco with a maximum value of £975,650.

Report author: Nick Dawe

Publication date: 07/11/2019

Date of decision: 31/10/2019

Decided at meeting: 31/10/2019 - Cabinet

Accompanying Documents: