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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

Scrutiny Committee (Corporate Resources): 8th February 2013

Report of the Managing Director

Revenue Monitoring for the Period 1st April 2012 to 30th November 2012

 

Purpose of the Report

1.             To advise Scrutiny Committee of the progress of revenue expenditure for the period 1st April, 2012 to 30th, November, 2012.

Recommendation

1.             That the position with regard to the Authority’s 2012/13 Revenue Budget be noted.

Reason for the Recommendation

1.             That the Members are aware of the projected revenue outturn for 2012/13. 

Background

2.             Cabinet on the 19th November 2012 (minute no c 1911 and c 1912 respectively) approved the amended Revenue Budget and Housing Revenue Account budget for 2012/13. The Budget information is subdivided by Cabinet Members’ portfolio within each Directorate.

Relevant Issues and Options

3.             The projected outturn for the 2012/13 Revenue Budget is shown in comparison with the amended Revenue Budget at Appendix ‘1'. The forecast is for the Council to underspend in the sum £105k.

4.             The forecast is for an estimated balanced budget on the Housing Revenue Account.

Directorate of Learning and Skills

5.             Overall, the Education Budget is projected to balance as at the end of March 2013, however, this is after transferring £138k from Education Reserves.  Any savings identified between now and the end of the year will be available to reduce the use of reserves, or to re-direct into the School Investment Strategy or other reserves.

6.             This is due to projected overspend against ALN £242k and School Improvement £3k offset by projected underspend against Strategic Planning and Performance £55k. ALN is an extremely volatile budget and various options for offsetting any potential overspend are being investigated.

7.             The revised budgets reflect a transfer from Access and Inclusion to Schools to reflect the devolved LSA scheme in Secondary Schools to Schools of £555k, £30k has been transferred from Schools to the Access and Inclusion team to fund pupils transferring to the Pupil Referral Unit (PRU) or other alternative provision. In addition £161k has been transferred to the School Improvement Service from the Transition Budget in Strategic Planning and Performance to reflect the additional funding required in 2012/13.

8.             The overspend against School Improvement £3k is due to adopting an amended funding approach for the WJEC subscription which had been previously proposed as a saving £42k, and also additional costs for subscriptions and licences paid on behalf of schools £11k. This is offset by a reduction in the projected cost of the Joint Education Service in year £10k and in addition income has been generated in year and vacancy savings made within the service £40k.

9.             Strategic Planning is projecting an underspend of £55k due to the following; vacant Director post £53k, savings against the pensions budgets £25k, £7k against Directorate office supplies and advertising budgets and £66k underspend in ICT and Data due to in year vacancy savings, additional income generated and new arrangements for funding school tests. This is offset by a projected overspend of £15k for Schools Rates and a projected overspend against Maternity costs met on behalf of schools of £80k. The outturn for maternity is difficult to project accurately and was overspent by £195k in 2011/12 and therefore it will need to be monitored carefully. From 2013/14 the Maternity budget will be devolved to schools and a scheme similar to the one currently operated for long term sickness will be put in place.

10.        Additional Learning Needs is projecting an overspend of £242k this is due to an overspend against the budget for children’s placements in independent schools £270k this is partly offset by additional recoupment income of £63k. ALN is also projecting an overspend of £252k against the one to one LSA budget this has been offset in year by £239k found as a result of decommitting other Pupil Support expenditure and as a result of savings identified as part of the proposed ALN Restructure, £22k additional income is projected to be generated in year and a £36k contribution made from the Transition budget. There is also an overspend in ALN of £80k due to the refurbishment and teaching materials for the Pupil Referral Unit (PRU) prior to inspection and lower than projected Age Weighted Pupil Unit contributions from schools towards pupils placed in the PRU, this additional expenditure will be funded by a contribution from the Excluded Pupils Reserve.

11.        Provision has been made within the budget for the annual cost of financing the School Investment Strategy of £600,000. This sum will be transferred to the School Investment Strategy Reserve.

12.        In addition to finance the School’s contributions to the ER/VR scheme Education is projecting to transfer £66,000 from Education Reserves this will be repaid by participating schools over 2013/14 and 2014/15.

Schools

13.        The delegated budget relating to schools is expected to balance as any under/over spend is carried forward by schools.

14.        Libraries - The Service is anticipated to outturn within budget

15.        Catering - The Service is anticipated to outturn within budget, however this can be affected by external factors and the requirement to meet WG nutritional standards.

Social Services

16.        The current forecast for Social Services at year end is an underspend of £403k.  This is as a result of the savings identified for the year and anticipated to be achieved, being £403k in excess of the actual savings required for the year, set as part of the Social Services Budget Programme.  While this is an achievement for the Directorate, it should be noted that this is only a short term gain as the total savings target for the whole of the Budget Programme, over the 4 year period, has not yet been finalised.  Further details are shown later in this report.  The Directorate is still under considerable pressure from several areas which could affect the eventual year end outturn.

17.        Children and Young People's Services - The year end projected outturn is an overspend of £123k.  An underspend in the Social Services Business Management and Innovation Division will reduce the recharge to Children and Young People's Services and thus reduce the overspend.  The service itself is actually projected to overspend by £177k.  There continues to be pressure on the Children’s Placements budget, specifically from children with especially complex needs.  There is also pressure on the budget in respect of accommodation costs for homeless young people and on the adoption budget due to a high cost post adoption support package.  Any increase in the number of children becoming looked after by the Council over the year could have a significant impact on the service.

18.        Adult Services - The year end projected outturn is an underspend of £526k.  An underspend in the Social Services Business Management and Innovation Division will reduce the recharge to Adults Services and thus increase the underspend.  The service itself is actually projected to underspend by £391k.  There is continuing pressure on the Community Care Packages budget.  This budget is extremely volatile and can be adversely affected by outside influences such as last year's introduction of the First Steps Initiative by the Welsh Government which capped charging for non residential services to £50 per week. The impact of this change will continue to be monitored as the year progresses and discussions with the Welsh Government regarding the issue will continue.  Another issue to affect the year end position will be the 2012/13 fee we set in respect of personal care costs for residents placed by the Council in residential and nursing homes provided by the independent sector.  Currently, 2% is included in the budget however a higher increase is being sought by the sector.  The remainder of the year could also be a testing time for this service, due to winter weather conditions and health related problems.

19.        Business Management and Innovation - The year end projected outturn is an underspend of £189k however this will be recharged to other areas of Social Services showing a breakdown position under this heading.   The reason for this underspend is mainly due to staff vacancies being held under the Protection and Policy heading pending a review of service provision.

Directorate of Visible and Housing

20.        Highways Maintenance & Engineering Design & Procurement - There is currently a £40k adverse variance to the revised profiled budget. This is mainly due to a slight overspend on agency costs. The revised budget for 2012/13 takes account of the efficiency savings required. The budget will be monitored closely to ensure these savings are met and it is expected that the budget will outturns on target.

21.        Waste Management - There is currently a £48k favourable variance to the revised profiled budget. The current underspend is mainly due to a continuing decrease in the level of waste taken to landfill, therefore saving on costly disposal. The revised budget for 2012/13 takes account of the efficiency savings required. The budget is currently expected to outturn on target.

22.        Grounds Maintenance - There is currently a £33k adverse variance to the revised profiled budget. This is mainly due to an overspend on new machinery as new legislation has come in to force for Hand Arm Vibration. The revised budget for 2012/13 takes account of the efficiency savings required. The budget will be monitored closely to ensure these savings are met and the budget outturns on target.

23.        Support – There is currently a favourable variance of £114k to the revised profiled budget. This budget is to be held for any cost pressures within Visible Services that may arise throughout the financial year. Currently this budget is also projected to outturn on target.

24.        Building Services - It is currently anticipated that this area will breakeven at year end.

25.        General Fund Housing - The Housing Services General Fund Account is currently showing a favourable variance of £11k on supplies and services but is expected to outturn on target.

Directorate of Development

26.        Public Protection and Private Sector Housing - Both these areas are predicted to outturn on target. 

27.        Planning and Transportation - There is currently a £186k favourable variance to revised profiled budget. This is predominately due to income from planning fees for major schemes now being in advance of the profiled estimate.  Recent progress in seeking to adopt highways at Rhoose Point has resulted in the receipt of fees which would otherwise not have been received  It is anticipated that the year end outturn will be a favourable variance of £59k, which will be used to fund overspend elsewhere in the division.

28.        Leisure - There is currently a £160k adverse variance to the revised profiled budget, of which £122k relates to overspending within the leisure centres as previously reported.  It is anticipated that the outturn at year end will be an adverse variance of £168k.  Part of this variance will be offset by savings from within Planning and Transportation.

29.        Economic Development - There is currently a £21k adverse variance to the revised profiled budget.  This variance is primarily attributable to the Employment and Training Services, as a result of the Government Work Programme receipts having not reached the profiled income targets to date.   This service is currently under review to enable a return to within budget in 2013/14.  It is anticipated that the outturn at year end will be an adverse variance of £36k.

Managing Director

30.        An estimated underspending of £250k from within the Policy budget will be used to offset the overspending on the Leisure Service.

31.        All Other Services may come under financial pressure during the year, however at this time they are expected to outturn on target.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

32.        As detailed in the body of the report.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

33.        There are no direct implications arising from the report.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

34.        There are no legal implications.

Crime and Disorder Implications

35.        There are no crime and disorder implications.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

36.        There are no equal opportunity implications.

Corporate/Service Objectives

37.        Effective monitoring assists in the provision of accurate and timely information to officers and Members and in particular allows services to better manage their resources.

Policy Framework and Budget

38.        This report is in accordance with the Policy Framework and Budget.

Background Papers

None.

 

Contact Officer

Robert Ingram (Principal Accountant) (01446 709252)

 

Officers Consulted

The Head of Strategic, Planning and Performance (Learning and Development), Directors of Visible Services and Housing, Development Service, Social Services and Resources have been consulted on the contents of this report

 

Responsible Officer:

Sian Davies, Managing Director

 

 

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