Agenda item







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This report summarises the budget monitoring position for the revenue account, and reserves statement to the end of September 2022


Not applicable





The overall position at the end of September 2022 shows a £4,191,298 underspend for the current financial year on the revenue account, this is however currently expected to deliver a full year overspend of £909,235.  (At the end of 2021/22 £616k was added to the General reserve to help offset the impacts of pay and inflation in the current year)



















Reasons for



It is recommended that Cabinet:


1)    Note the contents of the report and the current budget monitoring position.


2)    Recommend to Council that any outturn deficit is funded from a contribution from the use of the General Reserve


3)    Agree that a regular update should be provided to Members on the measures being undertaken to mitigate and reduce the current forecast deficit


To update Members on the current budget monitoring position for the Council.




(Papers relied on to write the report, which do not contain exempt information, and which are not published elsewhere)


System Budget monitoring reports



Cabinet Member(s) Cllr Eric Seward


Ward(s) affected All

Contact Officer, telephone number and email:  Alison Chubbock 07967 325037



Cllr T Adams – Council Leader introduced the report and informed Members that there were noticeable differences from the previous budget monitoring report, with the impact of inflation clearly having an effect on the Council’s finances. He added that Members should note the impact of the staff pay award and energy price inflation, in addition to leisure centre, property and plant running costs. It was noted that despite these increases, the Council was in a better financial position than many, but work was needed to reduce cost pressures, with further inflation expected. Cllr T Adams stated that the Council remained committed to existing services, and whilst other authorities had reduced services, it was fortunate that the new more efficient Reef facility cost substantially less to run than its predecessor.


Questions and Discussion


       i.          The Chairman asked if the forecasted overspend was identified as a key risk on the corporate risk register, to which the CE replied that the Council’s financial position was identified within the register and would be considered by GRAC in December. He added that he would consider whether the risk needed to be increased, with more focus placed on mitigation measures such as a review of vacant posts.


      ii.          Cllr J Toye referred to borrowing interest and noted that whilst a strong investment position continued to outweigh borrowing costs, he asked how long this could be sustained. The GA replied that this had been forecast to March 2023, but beyond that time investments and borrowing would be reconsidered as part of the budget setting process.


     iii.          Cllr V Holliday referred to mitigation measures and noted that reviewing service plans had not be prioritised, which she expected would be important to address the forecasted overspend. The CE replied that the Pandemic response had been prioritised over other actions, and whilst the Council was now operating in a different context, this would be considered as part of the upcoming budget setting process.


    iv.          Cllr C Cushing reiterated that with the financial position deteriorating from a moderate surplus to an overspend, he was concerned that actions were not being taken to address efficiencies that would help balance the budget in the year ahead. Cllr T Adams replied that he did not feel that the Council was inefficient, but with a new S151 Officer being appointed, balancing the budget would be an absolute priority. He added that Government had to be asked what actions they would take to help alleviate the additional pressures caused by inflation.


      v.          It was confirmed, following a question from Cllr N Housden that the staff pay award accounted for approximately £500k of staff inflation, and despite a two percent increase being expected, the agreed pay offer was just over five percent across the local government sector.


    vi.          The Chairman suggested that given the concerns raised, it may be prudent to amend the third recommendation to suggest that the forecasted overspend be added to the corporate risk register to be considered by GRAC at its December meeting.


   vii.          The recommendations were proposed by Cllr N Dixon and seconded by Cllr N Housden.




1.     To note the contents of the report and the current budget monitoring position.


2.     To recommend to Council that any outturn deficit is funded from a contribution from the use of the General Reserve.


3.     To recommend that the in-year forecast overspend be reflected in the Corporate Risk Register, that its RAG rating be reviewed by GRAC at its December 22 meeting, and that regular updates be provided to Members on the measures being taken to mitigate and reduce the current forecast deficit to achieve a balanced budget outturn for FY22/23.


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