Agenda and minutes

Finance and Resources Overview and Scrutiny - Tuesday, 5th October, 2021 7.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, The Forum. View directions

Contact: Corporate and Democratic Support  01442 228209

No. Item



The minutes of the previous meeting are not yet available.


The minutes of the meeting held on 7 September 2021 were not yet available. The Chairman went on to advise that he would be covering the actions points now.



Apologies for absence

To receive any apologies for absence


There were apologies from Cllrs Chapman and Sinha and Officers M Brookes, B Hosier and Nigel Howcutt.


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]



There were no declarations of interest.



Public Participation

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


The Chairman advised that there were 3 actions points from the last meeting,

1) A report is to be presented by MBrookes on Tender Procurement.

2) A report on EV Charging points which BHosier will issue within the next week or two.

3) Whether Enforcement on fly tipping was happening during Covid or post Covid and the Chairman confirmed that he had been advised that yes it was still taking place.


Cllr Tindall stated that in response to the EV Charging points, he had seen considerable email trail with BHoiser and a question of BP Pulse and their reliability had been raised. The last email from BP Pulse sent to BHosier stating that he would be getting back to him. Cllr Tindall asked for the matter to remain open until they get further information on this point.  The Chairman advised that it would remain open.


Cllr Townsend queried whether the action points were noted within the paperwork as he had not seen it. The Chairman advised that the minutes had not been issued and therefore the action points he had called out were from his own notes of the previous meeting.



Medium Term Financial Strategy pdf icon PDF 117 KB

Additional documents:


JDeane was invited to talk though the medium term financial strategy report, noting that it is always a challenge to make the best use out of this time and referring to Members being able to read the report at their own leisure. JDeane noted that he has tried to focus on some of the key issues that will shape and challenge the economic environment of the Council within the next two to four years.


JDeane advised that the MTFS models the financial implications of delivering the Councils plan, income and expenditure for the current year and the next four.  This allows us to plan effectively, budget within the context of sustainability and we get advanced notice of the future pressures so we can take time on how we are going to respond to it.


The caveat is that this is all relying on forecast, it is what we think. We still need to take into consideration implications of Covid and we are on the cusp of a Government announcement.


Questions and Answers:


Cllr Tindall asked for clarification around national insurance contribution and inflation.


JDeane advised that the national insurance contribution was going to be a pressure and is forecast to be around £200K and will be factored into the update when we look at the budget in February.


In response to the question about inflation, JDeane advised that inflation is going to be kept under review and it may well change before we finalise the budget for next year.


Cllr Mahmood asked whether there were any contingencies in there for a potential recession.


JDeane advised that whatever is put into the budget, has to be offset by either reducing another service by that amount or by generating an income by that amount. The way to manage it is through reserves which we currently have a working balance of £2.5m and in the case of extremes, we have ear marked reserves which we can use to strive towards where we need them, in unforeseen circumstances.


JDeane also noted that on the point of HGV drivers, there was a report which had been to Cabinet and was going to Council tomorrow which would pick up on those issues.


JDeane stated that in 2022/2023, regarding Government funding reductions, we expect to lose £700K of government funding, a further £700K in 2023/2024 and again the year after that.


In terms of income, there are a few things worth flagging up, CCTV provision of commercial services is looking at risk at the moment and the interest on the loans for the West Herts Crematorium will be dependent on them progressing by the final quarter of the current year in order for us to realise that in full next year.


There is £577K of savings identified and still to be delivered.


JDeane noted that in regard to the sustainable strategy, the same funding trends, reduced government support and focus to remain sustainable continued.  He noted that the strategy allowed the Council to set up a reserve  ...  view the full minutes text for item 58.


Garages Presentation

James Deane (Corporate Director, Finance and Operations) will provide a presentation to the committee.


JD provided a detailed presentation to the committee on the garages strategy.

Due to a technical error no questions and answers were recorded.



The report was noted.



Work Programme pdf icon PDF 125 KB



Cllr Townsend requested a report on car parking.