Agenda, decisions and draft minutes


Budget Planning Committee
Tuesday 27 November 2018 6.30 pm

Venue: Bodicote House, Bodicote, Banbury, OX15 4AA

Contact: Emma Faulkner / Richard Woods, Democratic and Elections  Email: emma.faulkner@cherwellandsouthnorthants.gov.uk, 01327 322043 / Email: richard.woods@cherwellandsouthnorthants.gov.uk, 01295 221550

Items
No. Item

35.

Declarations of Interest

Members are asked to declare any interest and the nature of that interest which they may have in any of the items under consideration at this meeting.

 

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

 

36.

Urgent Business

The Chairman to advise whether they have agreed to any item of urgent business being admitted to the agenda.

 

Minutes:

There were no items of urgent business.

 

37.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 204 KB

To confirm as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 6 November 2018.

 

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 6 November 2018 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

38.

Chairman's Announcements

To receive communications from the Chairman.

 

Minutes:

There were no Chairman’s announcements.

 

39.

Finance Monitoring Report - September 2018 pdf icon PDF 231 KB

Report of the Assistant Director – Finance and Procurement

 

Purpose of report

 

This report summarises the Finance monitoring position as at the end of each month.

 

Recommendations

             

1.1         To note the contents of the report.

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)  That the contents of the report be noted.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report from the Assistant Director – Finance and Procurement, which summarised the Council’s Finance Monitoring position at the end of September 2018.

 

The Assistant Director – Finance and Procurement advised the committee that there had been an improvement in the Council’s financial position, as a result of improved business rates growth and existing overspends having begun to be offset by underspends across some departments.

 

In response to questions from the Committee, the Assistant Director – Finance and Procurement advised that no additional financial risks had been identified in September or October.

 

Resolved

 

(1)  That the contents of the report be noted.

 

40.

Exclusion of the Press and Public

Minutes:

Resolved

 

That under Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972, the public and press be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business on the grounds that, if the public and press were present, it would be likely that exempt information falling under the provisions of Schedule 12A, Part I, Paragraph 3 would be disclosed to them, and that in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.

 

41.

Medium Term Financial Strategy

Verbal presentation from the Assistant Director: Finance and Procurement on the Medium Term Financial Strategy. Copies of the presentation will be available at the meeting.

 

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)  That the exempt presentation be noted.

Minutes:

Following discussion with Officers, the Committee agreed to move into private session for the duration of the discussion on this item.

 

The Interim Executive Director – Finance and Governance and the Assistant Director – Finance and Procurement gave an exempt presentation on the Medium Term Financial Strategy.

 

The Committee asked detailed questions on all aspects of the Medium Term Financial Strategy and Budget for 2019-20, which were duly answered by Officers.

 

Resolved

 

(1)  That the exempt presentation be noted.

 

42.

Re-admittance of the Press and Public

Minutes:

Resolved

 

That the press and public be re-admitted to the meeting.

 

43.

Business Rates - An Overview pdf icon PDF 700 KB

Verbal presentation from the Operations Director – CSN resources on the Business Rates Overview. A copy of the presentation is attached for information.

 

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)  That the presentation be noted.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a verbal presentation from the Operations Director – CSN Resources and the Financial Analyst which provided an overview on Business Rates.

 

In introducing the presentation, the Financial Analyst advised that the amount of business rates charged depended on the rateable value of the property as calculated by the Valuation Office Agency, the multiplier applied to it, and whether they were eligible for any form of business rate relief. 

 

During the presentation, the Committee heard that Cherwell District Council collected £93m in Business Rates during 2017/18 and retained £9m; however timing delays meant that this was not reported as income in the 2017/18 budget monitoring.

 

Following questions from the Committee regarding rates for new businesses, the Operations Director – CSN resources advised that it was not possible to look up Rateable Value in advance of a business opening, due to the  different rates and reliefs that may be applicable based on the nature of individual businesses.

 

Resolved

 

(1)  That the presentation be noted.

 

44.

Local Discretionary Business Rate Relief Scheme for 2019-20 pdf icon PDF 217 KB

Report of the Interim Executive Director – Finance and Governance

 

Purpose of report

 

To provide members of Budget Planning Committee with details of the proposed Local Discretionary Relief Scheme before consideration by Executive.

 

Recommendations

            

The meeting is recommended:

 

1.1      To note the contents of the report.

 

1.2   To recommend to Executive the adoption of the Local Discretionary Business Rates Relief Scheme for 2019-20

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)  That the contents of the report be noted.

 

(2)  That Executive be recommended to adopt the Local Discretionary Business Rates Relief Scheme for 2019-20.  

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report from the Interim Executive Director – Finance and Governance, which provided Members with details of the proposed Local Discretionary Business Rate Relief Scheme for 2019-20.

 

The Operations Director – CSN Resources advised the Committee that central Government expected local authorities to use discretionary powers in order to deliver the relief scheme; however there had been very little take up of the funding that had been made available. It was therefore proposed to apply the relief automatically to those businesses that qualified for it.

 

In response to questions from the Committee, the Operations Director – CSN Resources advised that assistance to parties impacted by the 2017 Revaluation was limited by the funding provided, and that this was forecast to decrease to £21k by 2020-21.

 

Resolved

 

(1)  That the contents of the report be noted.

 

(2)  That Executive be recommended to adopt the Local Discretionary Business Rates Relief Scheme for 2019-20.

 

45.

Business Rates Retail Relief Policy pdf icon PDF 239 KB

Report of the Interim Executive Director – Finance and Governance

 

Purpose of report

 

To provide members with an update on the Business Rates Retail Relief announced in the recent Budget and to propose a Retail Relief Policy for recommendation to Executive.

 

Recommendations

            

The meeting is recommended:

 

 1.1        To note the contents of this report.

 

1.2      To consider and recommend to Executive the proposed Business   Rates Retail Relief Policy contained in Appendix 1 of the report.

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)  That the contents of the report be noted.

 

(2)  That the proposed Business Rates Retail Relief Policy be recommended to Executive for consideration.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report from the Interim Executive Director – Finance and Governance, which provided an update on the Business Rates Retail Relief announced in the recent budget, and proposed a Retail Relief Policy.

 

In introducing the report, the Interim Executive Director – Finance and Governance advised the committee that the scheme applied to occupied retail premises with a rateable value of less than £51k in the years 2019-20 and 2020-21.

 

Following questions from the committee, the Operations Director – CSN Resources advised that any retail relief awarded by the Council would be reimbursed by central Government.

 

Resolved

 

(1)  That the contents of the report be noted.

 

(2)  That the proposed Business Rates Retail Relief Policy be recommended to Executive for consideration.

 

46.

100% Council Tax Premium on Long Term Empty Dwellings pdf icon PDF 230 KB

Report of the Interim Executive Director – Finance and Governance

 

Purpose of report

 

To provide members with an update on the change in legislation to allow for a Council Tax premium of 100% on properties that are empty for 2 years or more and to seek a recommendation for Executive on the introduction of 100% Empty Homes Premium.    

 

Recommendations

            

The meeting is recommended:

 

 1.1        To note the contents of the report and any financial implications for the Council.

 

1.2      To make a recommendation to Executive on the introduction of an Empty Homes Premium of 100% from 1 April 2019.

 

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)  That the contents of the report and any financial implications for the Council be noted.

 

(2)  That Executive be recommended to introduce an Empty Homes Premium of 100% from 1 April 2019.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report from the Interim Executive Director – Finance and Governance, which provided an update on the change in legislation to allow for a Council Tax premium of 100% on properties that were  empty for 2 years or more, and a recommendation to Executive on the introduction of a 100% Empty Homes Premium. 

 

The Interim Executive Director – Finance and Governance advised that from 1 April 2019, local authorities would be able to increase the Empty Homes Premium to 100% for properties that had been empty for two or more years. It was up to individual authorities to decide whether or not to implement the premium locally. 

 

In response to questions from the Committee regarding the implementation of the premium, the Interim Executive Director – Finance and Governance advised that the Council would notify any parties impacted by the increase prior to 1 April 2019, and local communities would be made aware of potential higher premiums through an advertising campaign.

 

Resolved

 

(1)  That the contents of the report and any financial implications for the Council be noted.

 

(2)  That Executive be recommended to introduce an Empty Homes Premium of 100% from 1 April 2019.

 

47.

Review of Committee Work Plan pdf icon PDF 21 KB

To review the Committee Work Plan.

 

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)  That the Committee Work Plan be noted.

Minutes:

The Committee considered its Work Plan.

 

Resolved

 

(1)  That the Committee Work Plan be noted.