Menu

Decision details

Council Budget 2019-2020

Decision status: For Determination

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: No

Decision:

Having considered an officer report, and presentations by Mayor and the non-

voting job share Cabinet Member for Finance, Skills and Jobs, Councillor

Amanda De Ryk, the Mayor and Cabinet agreed that:

 

(1) the comments of the Public Accounts Select Committee of 5 February

2019 be received and Mayor and Cabinet decisions on the budget report will

be taken formally with the budget update report on 13 February;

 

(2) having considered the views of those consulted on the budget, and subject

to consideration of the outcome of consultation with business ratepayers and

subject to proper process, as required, the Mayor and cabinet approves as

follows:

 

Capital Programme

 

(3) the 2018/19 Quarter 3 Capital Programme monitoring position and the

Capital Programme potential future schemes and resources as set out in

section 5 of this report be noted;

 

(4) to recommend that Council approves the 2019/20 to 2021/22 Capital

Programme of £344.7m, as set out in section 5 and attached at Appendices

W1 and W2;

 

Housing Revenue Account

 

(5) the consultation report on service charges to tenants’ and leaseholders in

the Brockley area, presented to area panel members on 27 November 2018,

attached at Appendix X2 be noted;

 

(6) the consultation report on service charges to tenants’ and leaseholders

and the Lewisham Homes budget strategy presented to area panel members

on 13 December 2018 as attached at Appendix X3 be noted;

 

(7) sets a decrease in dwelling rents of 1.0% (an average of £0.96 per week)

– as per the requirements from government as presented in section 6;

 

(8) sets a decrease in the hostels accommodation charge by 1.0% (or £0.36

per week), in accordance with Government requirements;

 

(9)  the following average weekly increases/decreases for dwellings be

approved for:

 

(10) service charges to non-Lewisham Homes managed dwellings (Brockley);

           caretaking                 4.30% (£0.22)

           grounds                     4.30% (£0.09)

           communal lighting   4.30% (£0.07)

           bulk waste collection           4.30% (£0.06)

           window cleaning     4.30% (£0.01)

           tenants’ levy             15.0% (£0.02)

 

(11)     service charges to Lewisham Homes managed dwellings:

           caretaking                 3.27%  (£0.19)

           grounds                     3.63% (£0.07)

           window cleaning     11.11% (£0.01)

           communal lighting   0.88% (£0.01)

           block pest control     1.84% (£0.03)

           waste collection       8.33% (£0.04)

           heating & hot water1.31% (£0.13)

           tenants’ levy             15.38% (£0.02)

           bulk waste disposal3.70% (£0.03)

           sheltered housing   1.00% (£0.24)

 

(12)     approves the following average weekly percentage changes for hostels

and shared temporary units for;

           service charges (hostels) – caretaking etc.; no change

           energy cost increases for heat, light & power; no change

           water charges increase; no change

 

(13)     approves an increase in garage rents by 25% (£2.37 per week) for

Brockley residents and 25% (£3.06 per week) for Lewisham Homes residents;

 

(14)     notes that the budgeted expenditure for the Housing Revenue Account

(HRA) for 2019/20 is £169.6m, split £99.9m revenue and £69.7m capital,

which includes the decent homes and new build programmes;

 

(15)     agrees the HRA budget strategy cut proposals in order to achieve a

balanced budget in 2019/20, as attached at Appendix X1;

 

Dedicated Schools Grant and Pupil Premium

 

(16)     recommends that Council agrees, subject to final confirmation of the

allocation, that the provisional Dedicated Schools Grant allocation of

£290.880m be the Schools’ Budget for 2019/20;

 

(17)     the funding in respect of each of the blocks continues to be based on

the National Funding Formula. A “soft formula” remains in place for the

Schools Block, however Lewisham Council has agreed to mirror the principles

of the National Funding Formula to distribute the Schools Budget Share;

 

(18)     Council be asked to agree that Minimum Funding Guarantee for the

schools block be set at a plus 0.20% for 2019/20 as supported by Schools

Forum;

 

(19)     the continuing pressures facing the High Needs Block be noted and the

transfer of £1m from the Schools Block to the High Needs Block be approved

as agreed with the Schools Forum;

 

(20)     an overall increase in the High Needs Block of £2m be noted, of which

£0.7m relates to the Secretary of States recent statement providing £300m to

Local Authorities to support pressure in the High Needs Block, with the

remaining increase arising from factors determining the High Needs Block

methodology adding £1m on top of this funding;

 

(21) to recognise that despite the increase in High Needs Funding, there

continues to remain upward pressure on costs, arising from a combination of

increase in pupils with specialist need, more complex need and associated

costs;

 

(22)     Council be asked to note that the Early Years Block position is

provisional pending January 2019 and 2020 pupil counts; and to further note

that within the supplementary funding for Nursery Schools (determined within

the Early Years Block) will continue for 2019/20 the provisional allocation

suggests a minor increase of £7k;

 

(23)     Council be asked to note a small increase of £15k to the Central

Services to Schools Block Component of the DSG;

 

(24)     Council be asked  to note the Pupil Premium Funding rates for 2019/20

will remain at current levels thereby resulting in a real term reduction in

spending and that the funding levels have not increased since 2017/18;

 

(25)     Council be asked to note that the 2019/20 pupil premium allocation will

be confirmed pending the January 2019 census; and to note for information

that 2018/19 pupil premium was £16.4m. The 2019/20 figure could potentially

be lower as a result of reduction in overall pupil numbers coupled with overall

reduction in Free School Meal Eligibility numbers;

 

(26)     Council be asked to note the latest financial position in schools and the

likely future cost pressures on schools;

 

General Fund Revenue Budget

 

(27)     Council be asked to note the projected overall variance against the

agreed 2018/19 revenue budget of £241.281m as set out in section 8 and that

any year-end overspend will have to be met from reserves;

 

(28)     Council be asked to endorse the budget cut proposals of £7.963m as

per the Mayor and Cabinet meeting of the 21 November 2018, as set out in

section 8 of the report and summarised in Appendix Y1;

 

(29)     In relation to budget cut proposals – Commercial Income (RES16)

£140k, Main Grants (COM12) £600k, Local Assemblies Funding (COM14)

£225k, and Small Grants (COM17) £50k – be approved and asks the Council

to endorse the proposed budget cuts totalling £1.015m in 2019/20, as set out

in section 8 and in Appendix Y2 of this report;

 

(30)     Notes that budget cut proposals Park Events Income (CUS03) and

Removal of Public Toilets (CUS08) totalling £0.292m in 2019/20, have yet to

be re-presented to Mayor and Cabinet for approval but are assumed as part

of the budget calculation for 2019/20 with any gap covered from once-off

resources until formerly concluded; 

 

(31)     Council be asked to agree the transfer of £5.0m in 2019/20 from the

New Homes Bonus reserve to the General Fund for one year to meet funding

shortfalls and that the position be reviewed again for 2020/21;

 

(32)     Council be asked to agree the use of £2.461m reserves to meet the

budget gap in 2019/20;

 

(33)     Council be asked to agree the allocation of £6.500m in 2019/20 be set

aside for corporate risks and pressures;

 

(34)     Council be asked to agree the allocation of the full £6.500m set aside

for corporate risks and pressures in 2019/20 to fund quantified budget

pressures;

 

(35)     Council be recommended to agree that a General Fund Budget

Requirement of £243.012m for 2019/20 be approved;

 

(36)     Council be asked to agree to a 4.99% increase in Lewisham’s Council

Tax element resulting in a Band D equivalent Council Tax level of £1,263.94

for Lewisham’s services and £1,584.45 overall and representing an overall

increase in Council Tax for 2019/20 of 5.76% subject to the GLA precept for

2019/20 being increased by £26.28 (i.e. 8.9%) from £294.23 to £320.51, in

line with the GLA’s draft budget proposal;

 

(37)     Council be asked to note the Council Tax Ready Reckoner which for

illustrative purposes sets out the Band D equivalent Council Tax at various

levels of increase, explained in section 8 and set out in more detail in

Appendix Y3;

 

(38)     the Interim Chief Finance Officer issues cash limits to all Directorates

once the 2019/20 Revenue Budget is agreed;

 

(39)     the Interim Chief Finance Officer’s Section 25 Statement be presented

in the Budget Update Report on the 13 February 2019 for approval;

 

(40)     Council be asked to agree the draft statutory calculations for 2019/20

as set out at Appendix Y5;

 

(41)     Council be asked to note the prospects for the revenue budget for

2020/21 and future years as set out in section 9;

 

(42)     officers continue to develop firm proposals and bring them forward for

working towards a cuts round before the summer recess to help plan early

and meet the future forecast budget shortfalls;

 

            Other Grants (within the General Fund)

 

(43)     Council be asked to note the adjustments to and impact of various

specific grants for 2019/20 on the General Fund as set out in section 8;

 

            Treasury Management Strategy

 

(44)     Council be recommended to approve the prudential indicators and

treasury indicators, as set out in section 10;

 

(45)     Council be recommended to approve the Annual Investment Strategy

and Credit Worthiness Policy, set out in further detail at Appendix Z2;

 

(46)     Council be recommended to approve the Capital Strategy 2019/20, set

out in further detail at Appendix Z5;

 

(47)     Council be recommended to approve the Minimum Revenue Provision

(MRP) policy as set out in section 10;

 

(48)     Council be recommended to agree to delegate to the Executive

Director for Resources & Regeneration authority during 2019/20 to make

amendments to borrowing and investment limits provided they are consistent

with the strategy and there is no change to the Council’s authorised limit for

borrowing;

 

(49)     Council be recommended to approve the credit and counterparty risk

management criteria, as set out at Appendix Z2, the proposed countries for

investment at Appendix Z3, and that it formally delegates responsibility for

managing transactions with those institutions which meet the criteria to the

Executive Director for Resources & Regeneration; and

 

(50)     Council be recommended to approve a minimum sovereign rating of

AA-.

 

Publication date: 07/02/2019

Date of decision: 06/02/2019

Decided at meeting: 06/02/2019 - Mayor and Cabinet

Accompanying Documents: