This report seeks guidance on the approach to be used in preparing the budget for 2022/23.
The Panel received a report seeking guidance on the approach to be used in preparing the budget for 2022/23.
The report requested the Panel’s support for the proposed budget setting strategy and highlighted that the forecast balanced position for 2022/23 is contingent on many uncertain factors, which may change throughout the budget process, including:
• That the Government delays implementation of its Fair Funding Review, as expected.
• That the Council is able to deliver all the savings already included within the Financial Plan.
• No new growth in expenditure.
The following matters were raised by Councillors:
a) The Council’s progress in implementing the new staffing structure and recruiting to vacant posts - Action – the number of posts currently vacant to be circulated to FPP members.
b) The level of revenue reserves, including the Business Rates Equalisation Reserve and whether these reserves could be re-purposed;
c) The potential impact of central government’s Fair Funding Review on the Council’s budget position and forecast reserve levels;
d) The deliverability of savings within the Medium Term Financial Strategy;
e) The extent to which income from Council services, in particular car parks, is recovering.
f) The adequacy of resources allocated to the Local Plan and planning appeals.
Following consideration, the Panel resolved:
(1) To support the 2022/23 budget setting strategy, as set-out in this report;
(2) To support the budget setting timetable at Appendix 1.