Venue: Council Chamber, The Forum. View directions
Contact: Corporate and Democratic Support 01442 228209
To confirm the minutes from the previous meeting
The minutes of the last meeting were agreed.
Apologies for absence
To receive any apologies for absence
Apologies for absence were received from Cllr Adeleke, Cllr Symington and Cllr Arslan.
Cllr Sinha attended remotely so was unable to participate in the meeting.
Declarations of Interest
To receive any declarations of interest
A member with a disclosable pecuniary interest or a personal interest in a matter who attends a meeting of the authority at which the matter is considered -
(i) must disclose the interest at the start of the meeting or when the interest becomes apparent
and, if the interest is a disclosable pecuniary interest, or a personal interest which is also prejudicial
(ii) may not participate in any discussion or vote on the matter (and must withdraw to the public seating area) unless they have been granted a dispensation.
A member who discloses at a meeting a disclosable pecuniary interest which is not registered in the Members’ Register of Interests, or is not the subject of a pending notification, must notify the Monitoring Officer of the interest within 28 days of the disclosure.
Disclosable pecuniary interests, personal and prejudicial interests are defined in Part 2 of the Code of Conduct For Members
[If a member is in any doubt as to whether they have an interest which should be declared they should seek the advice of the Monitoring Officer before the start of the meeting]
Councillor Douris advised that the company he owned was a tenant of a DBC commercial garage.
The Chairman noted that he was a director of a company that pays business rates locally.
An opportunity for members of the public to make statements or ask questions in accordance with the rules as to public participation
There was no public participation.
Consideration of any matter referred to the committee in relation to call-in
Action points from the previous meeting
All action points from the previous meeting had been resolved.
NH provided a presentations on the key proposals for the budget.
In terms of efficiencies or income generation NH gave details of savings proposals of £290,000, resource baseline growth proposals of £240,000, growth/funding proposals of £270,000 and new and amended capital bids of £3.2 million as follows:
Cemetery restructure of management saving of £40,000 in 2022/23.
Commercial property portfolio income - the reduction in commercial property income that we projected for 2021/22 coming into the baseline for 2022/23 resulting in a total of £250,000.
Estates team warden to cover additional responsibilities for the commercial property portfolio, overseeing the delivery of energy performance certificates for the whole portfolio and working with tenants on the ‘prevent’ agenda and monitoring of large scale events at a cost of £45,000 for 2022/23.
An increase in insurance premiums up to 20% which is an increase of £160,000 on 2022/23. NH confirmed this is yet to go through the procurement process and there will be an update before the final budget on this.
Short term/one off – reserve funded items
The revenues and benefits restructure at a cost of £110,000 in 2022/23 and £110,000 in 2023/24 which was approved prior to COVID but had to be delayed due to how busy the department was during the pandemic.
Providing energy performance certificates across the property portfolio at a one off cost of £160,000 for 2022/23, which is a new government requirement. Future policy is expected in terms of standardising EPCs but this is awaited from the government.
Capital – new and amendments
DEN’s One Stop Shop which will replace the existing food bank at the Paradise depot site with a café at a cost of £625,000 for 2022/23 and £1,875,000 in 2023/24. Part of this will be funded through the sale of adjacent land and a contribution from DEN’s and their partners.
Commercial property investment of £520,000 in 2022/23, £90,000 in 2023/24, £70,000 in 2024/25 and £30,000 in 2025/26. This includes investment in arcades that have been heavily used in COVID.
Cllr Tindall asserted that he didn’t want to see cost increases or rent increases for tenants. NH confirmed there was no change to the policy with regards to rent reviews and the rent cycle. Occupancy in the borough of commercial property is at 94-95% which is achieved through balancing rates and bringing in a return. Expected income from commercial property has been reduced in the budget to account for COVID and this will pick up in the next 3 years.
Cllr Guest asked whether the officer dealing with the general fund budget change analysis and if the Healthy Hub Officer will be replaced. NH will come back on this.
Cllr Townsend asked if the ‘bad things’ that have happened as a result of COVID have been accounted for in the budget for the following year. NH explained the economic recovery reserve was set up in 2021 with £7.5 million set aside to cover the cost and impact for COVID for a ... view the full minutes text for item 79.
The Chairman noted that he would liaise with officers to see if the meeting on 5th January would take place depending on what the items for the agenda may be.
BH to provide reports on (1) car parking and (2) electrical vehicle charging points.
The Chairman thanked everyone for their attendance and closed the meeting.
The Chairman to revert in due course as to whether the meeting on 5th January will go ahead.
The Chairman and BH to liaise offline about the timing and content of the reports on car parking and electrical vehicle charging points.