Agenda and draft minutes

Cabinet Scrutiny Committee
Wednesday, 2nd September, 2020 2.00 pm

Venue: Via Microsoft Teams

Items
No. Item

1.

Declarations of Interests

Minutes:

The following member made a declaration of interest at the commencement of the meeting:

 

Councillor S.Rahaman           Re - Former Afan Lido Site (Exempt under Paragraph 14) as he has a family business next to the site.

 

2.

Pre-decision Scrutiny

·        To select appropriate items from the Cabinet agenda for pre-decision scrutiny (cabinet reports enclosed for Scrutiny Members)

·        To select appropriate items from the Cabinet (Finance) Sub Committee agenda for pre-decision scrutiny (Cabinet Finance Sub - Committee reports enclosed for Scrutiny Members)

Minutes:

The committee chose to scrutinise the following Cabinet Board items:

 

Budget Update and Monitoring

 

Members received an overview of the financial implications of Covid-19 on the Council’s Financial Resources and 2020/21 Budget, as detailed within the circulated report.

It was highlighted that there was a mistake on page 4 of the report in which it states ‘and we are awaiting WG confirmation relating to a further £1’; it was confirmed that the figure should be amended to £1.8m.

Officers stated that Welsh Government originally allocated £188.5m for local authorities to recover costs and loss of income through the Hardship Fund which was mainly to cover the period up to the end of June. It was noted that the Council had submitted claims for additional expenditure that was incurred (£4.133m) and were still waiting for confirmation on the reimbursement for the claim in July. Members were informed that since writing the report, Welsh Government had agreed to reimburse £409k free school meal costs and around £207k social services costs; therefore leaving a balance of around £156k of additional costs that Welsh Government had said they would not be refunding. It was mentioned that the majority of the remaining balance was additional ICT hardware costs that the Council had incurred, in which Welsh Government were only reimbursing 50% of costs and 25% of communications and media marketing costs.

The Committee noted that Welsh Government had reimbursed the Council £2.3m worth of lost income relating to parks, leisure centres, libraries, theatres, school meals, trade waste and parking; and that the Council had submitted a further request for £1.8m mainly relating to schools, Hillside, rent income from environment services and income from capital projects. It was highlighted that clarification was still needed on how Welsh Government were going to be reviewing the loss of income claims, however the report assumed that at this stage £400k of the £1.8m would be reimbursed.

Following this, it was confirmed that on 17th August 2020, Welsh Government announced an additional £264m of funding for Local Authorities to further mitigate against the financial impact of Covid-19 and as part of the announcement, they stated that £25m would be related to school cleaning. It was noted that as a consequence of this, the original projected £10m overspend that was reflected in the analysis of the report, was currently down to £5m projected overspend.

A discussion took place in relation to the progress of the financial forward planning and lost income payments. It was stated that there was no guarantee from the UK Treasury and Government of further consequential payments coming forward, therefore Welsh Government could not guarantee any further lost income payments; however they were paying majority of the claims and were efficiently monitoring. It was mentioned that the Council would need to start looking at their own council tax setting, in which there had been some additional money for council tax relief schemes; it was added that the Council would have a better idea in the next few  ...  view the full minutes text for item 2.

3.

Access to Meetings

To resolve to exclude the public for the following items pursuant to Regulation 4 (3) and (5) of Statutory Instrument 2001 No.2290 and the relevant exempt paragraphs of Part 4 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED:        that pursuant to Section 100A(4) and (5) of the

Local Government Act 1972, the public be

excluded for the following item of business

which involved the likely disclosure of exempt

information as defined in Paragraph 14 of Part 4

of Schedule 12A to the above Act.

 

4.

Pre-Decision Scrutiny of Private Item/s

·        To select appropriate items from the Cabinet agenda for pre-decision scrutiny (cabinet reports enclosed for Scrutiny Members)

·        To select appropriate items from the Cabinet (Finance) Sub Committee agenda for pre-decision scrutiny (Cabinet Finance Sub - Committee reports enclosed for Scrutiny Members)

Minutes:

The committee chose to scrutinise the following Cabinet Board private items:

 

Former Afan Lido Site

 

Members received information on the former Afan Lido Site as detailed within the circulated private report.

 

Following scrutiny, the committee was supportive of the proposals to be considered by Cabinet.