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Agenda Item No.

 

 

THE VALE OF GLAMORGAN COUNCIL

 

CABINET: 8TH SEPTEMBER 2014

 

REFERENCE FROM SCRUTINY COMMITTEE (SOCIAL CARE AND HEALTH): 14TH JULY 2014

 

 

206    REVENUE AND CAPITAL MONITORING FOR THE PERIOD 1ST APRIL 2014 TO 31ST MAY 2014 (DSS) –

 

The Operational Manager – Accountancy presented the report the purpose of which was to advise Members of the position in respect of revenue and capital expenditure for the period 1st April to 31st May 2014. 

 

Revenue

 

As it remained early in the financial year, the current forecast for Social Services was a balanced budget.  In addition to increased demand for services, there was pressure on the Directorate to achieve its savings targets for 2014/15 onwards.

 

A table and graph setting out the variance between profiled budget and actual expenditure to date and the projected position at year end were attached at Appendix 1 to the report.  The Appendix also included a graph showing the trend in Adult Services expenditure to budget for the year to date.

 

Children and Young People's Services - The major issue concerning this service was the continued pressure on the children’s placements budget.  Any increase in the number of children becoming looked after by the Council over the year could have a significant impact on the service.  The Joint Budget for Residential Placements for Looked After Children was set this year at £3.335m.  Currently the projected outturn was for a balanced budget.

 

Adult Services - The major issue concerning this service was the continued pressure on the Community Care Packages budget.  This budget was extremely volatile and could be adversely affected by outside influences.  While the budget was currently showing a breakeven position, there would be great pressure on this budget throughout the coming year and Committee would be advised of any change in this position.  The annual deferred income budget for 2014/15 had been set at £725k and £107k had been received as at 31st May 2014, which was slightly behind the current budget profile of £121k.

 

The Social Services Directorate was committed to achieving a balanced budget in 2014/15 while delivering the approved savings.

 

 

Capital

 

Appendix 2 to the report detailed financial progress on the Capital Programme as at 31st May 2014.

 

The monitoring report showed that actual expenditure for the month of May 2014 was matched by a similar figure in the 'profile to date' column, thereby showing no variances.  Profiled expenditure had been requested from Project Managers and would be updated in the next report.

 

Members should be aware that Appendix 2 to the report did not include requests for unspent committed expenditure to be slipped from 2013/14 into 2014/15.  A request for this slippage would be included in the Closing Down report presented to a future Cabinet meeting.

 

For all schemes where it was evident that the full year's budget would not be spent during the year, the relevant officers were required to provide an explanation for the shortfall and this would be taken to the earliest available Cabinet.

 

Social Services Budget Programme Update 

 

On 5th March 2014, Council also approved the savings targets for 2014/15 and the initial savings targets for 2015/16 and 2016/17.  Due to the pressures on the community care package budget, it was approved that £125k of the 2014/15 saving be deferred until 2015/16 and a further £300k deferred from 2015/16 to 2016/17.

 

The Directorate was currently required to find savings totalling £3.97m by the end of 2016/17.  The surplus shown was as a result of the foster carer recruitment project and could be used to mitigate any additional savings to be found in future years.

 

The following table shows the approved savings targets and the savings identified by year.  It includes the £293,000 identified in 2012/13 in excess of the saving target for that year.

 

Year

Savings Required

£000

Savings Identified

£000

In Year Surplus/ (Shortfall)

£000

Cumulative Surplus/   (Shortfall)

£000

Previously Identified Savings

 

293

293

293

2014/15

713

454

(259)

34

2015/16

1,600

1,676

76

110

2016/17

1,657

1,733

76

186

TOTAL

3,970

4,156

 

 

 

Appendix 3 to the report detailed the latest progress for each savings project currently identified. 

 

The Social Services Directorate was committed to achieving a balanced budget.  The Corporate Budget Programme Board for Social Services and project teams overseeing the plan would continue to develop it further and ensure delivery and progress.  Progress updates would be reported as part of the overall financial monitoring report for the Directorate.

 

A Committee Member queried with officers as to how confident they were that a balanced budget for this year would be achieved.  In reply Members were informed that extra care had been highlighted as an area of concern due to the delay in the completion of the facility within Barry.  Members were also asked to note the volatile nature of the budget for residential care packages. 

 

In referring to the budget savings plan, a Member queried if this included provision.  The Operational Manager – Accountancy advised Members that this did not include provision and the use of provisions would be assessed at year end if budgets were overspent. 

 

A Committee Member, making reference to the recent foster care recruitment campaign, asked if this had made a difference.  In reply the Head of Children and Young People Services stated that the campaign had made an impact and that all the targets had been met. 

 

The Committee sought clarification around whether savings within the back office were being considered before any possible front line savings.  The Director of Social Services informed the Committee that any detailed review of the structure of the service placed significant emphasis on maintaining front line services over back office functions.

 

RECOMMENDED –

 

(1)       T H A T the position with regard to the 2014/15 revenue and capital monitoring be noted.

 

(2)       T H A T the progress made in delivering the Social Services Budget Programme be noted and referred to Cabinet for information.

 

Reasons for recommendations

 

(1)       That Members are aware of the position with regard to the 2014/15 revenue and capital monitoring relevant to the Scrutiny Committee.

 

(2)       That Members are aware of the progress being made to date on the Social Services Budget Programme.â€

 

 

Attached as Appendix – Report to Scrutiny Committee (Social Care and Health): 14th July, 2014

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