Agenda and decisions

Cabinet
Thursday, 6th February, 2020 7.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Civic Offices, High Street, Epping

Contact: A. Hendry (Democratic Services)  Tel: (01992) 564246 Email:  democraticservices@eppingforestdc.gov.uk

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Webcasting Introduction

This meeting is to be webcast and Members are reminded of the need to activate their microphones before speaking.

 

The Chairman will read the following announcement:

 

“I would like to remind everyone present that this meeting will be broadcast live to the Internet and will be capable of subsequent repeated viewing, with copies of the recording being made available for those that request it.

 

By being present at this meeting, it is likely that the recording cameras will capture your image and this will result in your image becoming part of the broadcast.

 

You should be aware that this may infringe your human and data protection rights. If you have any concerns then please speak to the Webcasting Officer.

 

Please could I also remind Members to activate their microphones before speaking.”

 

Additional documents:

3.

Declarations of Interest

To declare interests in any item on this agenda.

Additional documents:

4.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 273 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting of the Cabinet held on 06th January 2020.

Additional documents:

Decision:

That the minutes of the meeting of the Cabinet held on 6th January 2020 be taken as read and signed by the leader as a correct record.

 

5.

Reports of Portfolio Holders

To receive oral reports from Portfolio Holders on current issues concerning their Portfolios, which are not covered elsewhere on this agenda.

Additional documents:

6.

Public Questions and Requests to Address the Cabinet

To receive any questions submitted by members of the public and any requests to address the Cabinet.

 

(a)        Public Questions

 

To answer questions asked by members of the public after notice in accordance with the provisions contained within Part 4 of the Constitution (Council Rules, Rule Q3) on any matter in relation to which the Cabinet has powers or duties or which affects the District.

 

(b)       Requests to Address the Cabinet

 

Any member of the public or a representative of another organisation may address the Cabinet on any agenda item (except those dealt with in private session as exempt or confidential business) due to be considered at the meeting, in accordance with the provisions contained within Article 7 of the Constitution (The Executive, Paragraphs 27 and 28).

 

Additional documents:

7.

Overview and Scrutiny

To consider any matters of concern to the Cabinet arising from the Council’s Overview and Scrutiny function and to identify any matters that the Cabinet would like the Overview and Scrutiny Committee to examine as part of its work programme.

 

Additional documents:

8.

Council Housebuilding Cabinet Committee - 19 December 2019 pdf icon PDF 130 KB

(Housing and Property Services Portfolio Holder) to consider the attached minutes from the meeting of the Council Housebuilding Cabinet Committee, held on 19 December 2019, and any recommendations therein.

Additional documents:

Decision:

The Cabinet noted and agreed the minutes of the Council Housebuilding Cabinet Committee meeting of 19 December 2019.

9.

Group Company Governance Document pdf icon PDF 359 KB

To consider the attached report (C-031-2019-20).

Additional documents:

Decision:

 

(1)   The Cabinet approved the Qualis Group Shareholder Agreement.

 

(2)   The Cabinet noted the Directors Roles and Responsibilities.

 

(3)   The Cabinet noted the terms of reference for the Qualis Group Board Meetings.

 

(4)  The Cabinet approved the selection and recruitment process for Group Board

 Members.

 

(5)  The Cabinet appointed the Interim Board on the recommendation of the Leader in consultation with the LRA Group Leader and operate in accordance with the Shareholder Agreement.

 

10.

Council's Budget Report pdf icon PDF 177 KB

To consider the attached report (C-032-2019-20).

Additional documents:

Decision:

In general

The Cabinet:

  1. noted that the Financial Strategy of the Authority had been further developed and consisted of four linked papers. The papers and figures were subject to final review because of Government announcements and final due diligence;
  2. noted the current reports reflected the suggestions of Cabinet and Members in general made in early January, later and better information, minor presentation improvements and the inclusion of a summary balance sheet statement;
  3. allowed for this level of final change before presentation of the Financial Strategy to the Full Council in February adjustments with a cumulative net impact of £500,000 could be made on the direction of the Leader in consultation with the Portfolio Holder for Planning and the Section 151 Officer and reported back to the Council; and
  4. noted that adjustments to the papers with a value more than £500,000 were brought back to the Cabinet.

 

Paper A, Medium Term Financial Strategy

The Cabinet:

  1. approved the approach set out in the Medium Term Financial Strategy, particularly in respect of inflation of cost and charges and fees and the aim to maintain the financial strength of the Authority as evidenced by reserve balances; and
  2. supported the increase in the importance of the income from Qualis in respect of the medium term financial strategy and the budget.

 

Paper B, Budget 2020/21

The Cabinet:

  1. approved the 2020/21 budget in outline and confirmed the approach to cost and income inflation at 3.0%, noting that rents would rise per the national formula at 2.7% and car parking income would not rise at all pending the outcome of the review;
  2. approved the 2020/21 budget in outline and confirmed the list of developments for which funding would be released on implementation;
  3. approved the general and HRA capital spend of £26,119,250 in total;
  4. approved the loans to Qualis that with total up to £120m in 2020/21 as set out in the report; and
  5. approved the 2020/21 budget in outline and confirmed that the overall funding adjustments for the District Development Fund and savings and contingency were as set out, i.e. a net draw from DDF of £846,660 (£2m forecast last year), £500,000 of savings, the formation of a contingency fund assumed spent of £1,095,540.

 

Paper C, Prudential Indicators

The Cabinet:

  1. noted the intent of keeping the financial strength of thee Authority at current levels;
  2. noted the impact of taking loans and onwardly granting loans to Qualis with a margin of profit for the Authority;
  3. noted the general risk price approach to the loans granted to Qualis; and
  4. noted that the full set of prudential indicators along with the treasury strategy would be taken to the Full Council in February.

 

Paper D, Council Tax Increase

The Cabinet:

  1. to recommend the council tax increase of 1.5% (half the predicted inflation rate) for 2020/21 to full Council; and
  2. noted that in 2021/22 the options to cease or reduce council tax rates exists (though the Government expectation on what should be raised from council tax should be noted).

 

11.

Any Other Business

Section 100B(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972, together with paragraphs 6 and 24 of the Council Procedure Rules contained in the Constitution requires that the permission of the Chairman be obtained, after prior notice to the Chief Executive, before urgent business not specified in the agenda (including a supplementary agenda of which the statutory period of notice has been given) may be transacted.

 

In accordance with Operational Standing Order 6 (non-executive bodies), any item raised by a non-member shall require the support of a member of the Committee concerned and the Chairman of that Committee.  Two weeks' notice of non-urgent items is required.

Additional documents:

12.

Exclusion of Public and Press

Exclusion

To consider whether, under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public and press should be excluded from the meeting for the items of business set out below on grounds that they will involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in the following paragraph(s) of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act (as amended) or are confidential under Section 100(A)(2):

 

Agenda Item No

Subject

Exempt Information Paragraph Number

Nil

Nil

Nil

 

The Local Government (Access to Information) (Variation) Order 2006, which came into effect on 1 March 2006, requires the Council to consider whether maintaining the exemption listed above outweighs the potential public interest in disclosing the information. Any member who considers that this test should be applied to any currently exempted matter on this agenda should contact the proper officer at least 24 hours prior to the meeting.

 

Background Papers

Article 17 of the Constitution (Access to Information) define background papers as being documents relating to the subject matter of the report which in the Proper Officer's opinion:

 

(a)        disclose any facts or matters on which the report or an important part of the report is based;  and

 

(b)        have been relied on to a material extent in preparing the report and does not include published works or those which disclose exempt or confidential information and in respect of executive reports, the advice of any political advisor.

 

The Council will make available for public inspection one copy of each of the documents on the list of background papers for four years after the date of the meeting. Inspection of background papers can be arranged by contacting either the Responsible Officer or the Democratic Services Officer for the particular item.

Additional documents: