Agenda, decisions and minutes

Venue: The Forum, Moat Lane, Towcester, Northants NN12 6AD

Contact: Natasha Clark, Democratic and Elections  Email: natasha.clark@cherwellandsouthnorthants.gov.uk, 01295 221589

Items
No. Item

63.

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.

64.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 235 KB

To confirm as a correct record the Minutes of the meeting of Cabinet held on 14 January 2019.

Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting of Cabinet held on 14 January 2019 were agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

65.

Chairman's Announcements

To receive communications from the Chairman.

Minutes:

There were no Chairman’s announcements.

66.

New Homes Bonus Review post consultation pdf icon PDF 169 KB

Report of Assistant Director Finance, Procurement and Property (S151 Officer)

 

Purpose of report

 

New Homes Bonus is a grant that is paid by central government to local councils to reflect and incentivise housing growth in their areas.  Central government states that there are no conditions attached to the grant and it is up to councils to determine how to spend the money, although there is an expectation that they will consult the community about the funds - especially where the housing growth has been undertaken.

 

South Northamptonshire Council currently has a policy in regards to New Homes Bonus that includes allocating funding to recognise both the District wide costs for local housing growth as well as the impact locally from the housing, through targeted allocations. This report sets out options around how to manage this from 2019/20 onwards.    

 

Recommendations

 

The meeting is recommended to:

 

1.1.         Note the outcome of the consultation

 

1.2.         Approve the update to the policy which provides for a single communities allocation rather than notional town and parish allocations.

 

1.3.         Approve the use of Investment model criteria for grants above £50k.

 

1.4.         Agree maximum grant of £250k.

 

1.5.         Note that the Community Funding Panel will review the allocation process and amounts after each meeting and report back to Cabinet.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)            That the outcome of the consultation be noted.

 

(2)            That the update to the policy which provides for a single communities allocation rather than notional town and parish allocations be approved.

 

(3)            That the use of Investment model criteria for grants above £50k be approved.

 

(4)            That a maximum grant of £250k per project be approved.

 

(5)            That it be noted that the Community Funding Panel would review the allocation process and amounts after each meeting and report back to Cabinet.

Minutes:

The Assistant Director Finance, Procurement and Property (S151 Officer) submitted a report which sought consideration of the future New Homes Bonus Policy for the council.

 

New Homes Bonus was a grant that was paid by central government to local councils to reflect and incentivise housing growth in their areas. Central government stated that there were no conditions attached to the grant and it was up to councils to determine how to spend the money, although there was an expectation that they would consult the community about the funds - especially where the housing growth has been undertaken.

 

South Northamptonshire Council currently had a policy in regards to New Homes Bonus that included allocating funding to recognise both the District wide costs for local housing growth as well as the impact locally from the housing, through targeted allocations. The report set out options around how to manage this from 2019/20 onwards.    

 

Resolved

 

(1)          That the outcome of the consultation be noted.

 

(2)          That the update to the policy which provides for a single communities allocation rather than notional town and parish allocations be approved.

 

(3)          That the use of Investment model criteria for grants above £50k be approved.

 

(4)          That a maximum grant of £250k per project be approved.

 

(5)          That it be noted that the Community Funding Panel would review the allocation process and amounts after each meeting and report back to Cabinet.

 

Reasons

 

This report sets out a revised proposed scheme for New Homes Bonus. This will be considered alongside the Business Plan and MTFS by Council in February 2019.

 

It is proposed that for 2019/20 there is an update to the policy which provides for a single communities allocation rather than notional town and parish allocations. This revised allocation will allow proposals to come forward in the same way but also provide the benefit of potentially being able to bid for larger amounts for bigger initiatives if required.

 

The scheme also ensures that the money that has already been allocated against the community element of the New Homes Bonus grant will be spent within that area, including all monies up to and including 2018/19 and then 2019/20.

 

Grants would be made subject to the standard terms and conditions for existing grants. Schemes would be judged both on value to the community and financial viability. Using the money for match-funded purposes and also the joining up of more than one organisation would also be encouraged, and would ensure that the maximum opportunity for allocating funding to our communities can be achieved.

 

The Community Funding Panel will review the process and criteria that is currently in place at its April 2019 meeting to ensure that there is clarity surrounding eligibility of schemes.

 

Alternative options

 

Members may choose to put forward an alternative approach which may be considered as part of setting the budget for 2019//20.

 

Option 1: To reject the current proposal and make alternative recommendations. Members will not be aware of the implications of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 66.

67.

Business Plan 2019/20 and Medium Term Financial Strategy 2019/20 - 2023/24 pdf icon PDF 625 KB

Report of Assistant Director Finance, Procurement and Property (S.151 Officer)

 

Purpose of report

 

The Business Plan and Summary Medium Term Financial Strategy are presented as an integrated report. This demonstrates the Councils strategic approach to aligning its resource to the delivery of Councils Priorities.

 

This report provides members with an update on the Business Plan 2019/20 and the Council’s Summary Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS) for 2019/20 to 2023/24 prior to the final MTFS being presented during February 2019.    

 

Recommendations

 

The meeting is recommended:

 

1.1.         To consider and recommend to Council approval of the Business Plan set out in Appendix 1.

 

1.2.         To note the Risk Register contained at Appendix 2.

 

1.3.         To consider and recommend to Council an increase in the level of Council Tax for South Northamptonshire Council of 2.99% for 2019/20.

 

1.4.         To consider and recommend to Council approval of the Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS), Revenue Budget 2019/20 and Capital Programme including recommending the growth and savings proposals included at Appendix 9.

 

1.5.         To consider and recommend to Council to confirm the minimum level of General Fund reserves of £1.8m.

 

1.6.         To consider and recommend to Council that authority be delegated to the Chief Finance Officer in consultation with the Portfolio Holder for Finance & Governance and Leader of the Council, and where appropriate the relevant Director and Portfolio Holder to:

·        Transfer monies to/from earmarked reserves should that become necessary during the financial year.

·        Update prudential indicators in both the Prudential Indicators Report and Treasury Management Strategy Report to Council, for any budget changes that impact on these.

 

1.7.         To consider and recommend to Council that the Fees & Charges set out in Appendix 7 be approved.

 

1.8.         To consider the Treasury Management Strategy, including the Prudential Indicators, Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP) Policy and Affordable Borrowing Limit for 2019/20 as set out in Appendix 6.

 

1.9.         To consider and recommend to Council that authority be delegated to the Chief Finance Officer to make any technical changes necessary to the papers for the Council meeting of 27 February 2019, including changes to the Finance Settlement and change relating to Parish Precepts and Council Tax levels associated with those changes.

 

1.10.     To note the contents of the Section 25 report from the Chief Finance Officer in relation to the robustness of estimates and adequacy of reserves set out in Appendix 8.

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)          That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to approve the Business Plan (annex to the Minutes as set out in the Minute Book).

 

(2)          That the Risk Register (annex to the Minutes as set out in the Minute Book) be noted.

 

(3)          That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to approve an increase in the level of Council Tax for South Northamptonshire Council of 2.99% for 2019/20.

 

(4)          That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to approve the Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS), Revenue Budget 2019/20 and Capital Programme including the growth and savings proposals (annex to the Minutes as set out in the Minute Book).

 

(5)          That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to confirm the minimum level of General Fund reserves of £1.8m.

 

(6)          That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to delegate authority to the Chief Finance Officer in consultation with the Portfolio Holder for Finance & Governance and Leader of the Council, and where appropriate the relevant Director and Portfolio Holder to:

·         Transfer monies to/from earmarked reserves should that become necessary during the financial year.

·         Update prudential indicators in both the Prudential Indicators Report and Treasury Management Strategy Report to Council, for any budget changes that impact on these.

 

(7)          That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to approve the Fees & Charges set out in the Annex to the Minutes (as set out in the Minute Book).

 

(8)          That the Treasury Management Strategy, including the Prudential Indicators, Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP) Policy and Affordable Borrowing Limit for 2019/20 be noted.

 

(9)               That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to delegate authority to the Chief Finance Officer to make any technical changes necessary to the papers for the Council meeting of 27 February 2019, including changes to the Finance Settlement and change relating to Parish Precepts and Council Tax levels associated with those changes.

Minutes:

The Assistant Director Finance, Procurement and Property (S.151 Officer) submitted a report which provided members with an update on the Business Plan 2019/20 and the Council’s Summary Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS) for 2019/20 to 2023/24 prior to the final MTFS being presented during February 2019.    

 

The Business Plan and Summary Medium Term Financial Strategy were presented as an integrated report. This demonstrates the Councils strategic approach to aligning its resource to the delivery of Councils Priorities.

 

On behalf of Cabinet, the Chairman thanked the Portfolio Holder for Finance and Governance, the Budget and Financial Strategy Committee. the Assistant Director: Finance, Procurement and Property Management and the Finance team for their hard work in bringing the MTFS to this stage.  

 

Resolved

 

(1)          That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to approve the Business Plan (annex to the Minutes as set out in the Minute Book).

 

(2)          That the Risk Register (annex to the Minutes as set out in the Minute Book) be noted.

 

(3)          That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to approve an increase in the level of Council Tax for South Northamptonshire Council of 2.99% for 2019/20.

 

(4)          That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to approve the Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS), Revenue Budget 2019/20 and Capital Programme including the growth and savings proposals (annex to the Minutes as set out in the Minute Book).

 

(5)          That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to confirm the minimum level of General Fund reserves of £1.8m.

 

(6)          That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to delegate authority to the Chief Finance Officer in consultation with the Portfolio Holder for Finance & Governance and Leader of the Council, and where appropriate the relevant Director and Portfolio Holder to:

·         Transfer monies to/from earmarked reserves should that become necessary during the financial year.

·         Update prudential indicators in both the Prudential Indicators Report and Treasury Management Strategy Report to Council, for any budget changes that impact on these.

 

(7)          That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to approve the Fees & Charges set out in the Annex to the Minutes (as set out in the Minute Book).

 

(8)          That the Treasury Management Strategy, including the Prudential Indicators, Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP) Policy and Affordable Borrowing Limit for 2019/20 be noted.

 

(9)               That, having given due consideration, Full Council be recommended to delegate authority to the Chief Finance Officer to make any technical changes necessary to the papers for the Council meeting of 27 February 2019, including changes to the Finance Settlement and change relating to Parish Precepts and Council Tax levels associated with those changes.

 

Reasons

 

This report presents the final Business Plan and MTFS for 2019/20. It is a legal requirement to set a balance budget and the recommendations as outlined set out a way to achieve this.

 

Alternative options

 

Option 1: To reject the current proposals and make alternative recommendations. Members will not be aware of the medium term financial forecast  ...  view the full minutes text for item 67.

68.

Local Government Reform In Northamptonshire - Proposed Joint Committee pdf icon PDF 240 KB

Report of Executive Director: Resources

 

Purpose of report

 

To consider establishment of a joint committee between councils with functions related to implementation of local government reform for Northamptonshire, particularly in respect of the operation of a shadow authority.

 

Recommendations

             

The meeting is recommended to recommend to Full Council that:

 

 1.1          A ‘WestNorthamptonshire Joint Committee’ of 16 seats (4 per council) be established with Northampton Borough Council, Daventry District Council and Northamptonshire County Council, effective from 28th February 2019, with delegated functions as set out in the terms of reference at Appendix 1, subject to these other councils so resolving.

 

1.2           The statutory allocation of seats to political groups be noted and the nominations for appointments to committees in accordance with the wishes of the political groups be approved, as detailed in the ‘Membership of Committees 2018-19’ schedule – to be tabled at the Full Council meeting.

 

1.3           Subject to resolutions as per above, the Monitoring Officer be delegated authority to produce a ‘West Northamptonshire Joint Committee Agreement’ identifying appropriate standing orders and operating practices for the Committee; and in consultation with the Leader of the Council, to negotiate, finalise and enter into the proposed agreement with the other councils in west Northamptonshire.

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)          That Full Council be recommended to agree that a WestNorthamptonshire Joint Committee’ of 16 seats (4 per council) be established with Northampton Borough Council, Daventry District Council and Northamptonshire County Council, effective from 28 February 2019, with delegated functions as set out in the terms of reference (Annex to the Minutes as set out in the Minute Book) at Appendix 1, subject to these other councils so resolving.

 

(2)          That Full Council be recommended to note the statutory allocation of seats to political groups be noted and approve the nominations for appointments to committees in accordance with the wishes of the political groups, as detailed in the ‘Membership of Committees 2018-19’ schedule – to be tabled at the Full Council meeting.

 

(3)          That, subject to Full Council agreeing resolutions (1) and (2), Full Council be further recommended to delegate authority to the Monitoring Officer to produce a ‘West Northamptonshire Joint Committee Agreement’ identifying appropriate standing orders and operating practices for the Committee; and in consultation with the Leader of the Council, to negotiate, finalise and enter into the proposed agreement with the other councils in west Northamptonshire.

 

Minutes:

The Executive Director: Resources submitted a report to consider the establishment of a joint committee between councils with functions related to implementation of local government reform for Northamptonshire, particularly in respect of the operation of a shadow authority.

 

Resolved

 

(1)          That Full Council be recommended to agree that a WestNorthamptonshire Joint Committee’ of 16 seats (4 per council) be established with Northampton Borough Council, Daventry District Council and Northamptonshire County Council, effective from 28 February 2019, with delegated functions as set out in the terms of reference (Annex to the Minutes as set out in the Minute Book) at Appendix 1, subject to these other councils so resolving.

 

(2)          That Full Council be recommended to note the statutory allocation of seats to political groups be noted and approve the nominations for appointments to committees in accordance with the wishes of the political groups, as detailed in the ‘Membership of Committees 2018-19’ schedule – to be tabled at the Full Council meeting.

 

(3)          That, subject to Full Council agreeing resolutions (1) and (2), Full Council be further recommended to delegate authority to the Monitoring Officer to produce a ‘West Northamptonshire Joint Committee Agreement’ identifying appropriate standing orders and operating practices for the Committee; and in consultation with the Leader of the Council, to negotiate, finalise and enter into the proposed agreement with the other councils in west Northamptonshire.

 

Reasons

 

The Secretary of State is considering the Joint Proposal for Northamptonshire Local Government Reform as submitted by the four councils in ‘West Northamptonshire’. Members and Officers are continuing with preparatory work via informal arrangements, as per previous Council resolution, should reorganisation be pursued by Government / Parliament.

 

A proposed ‘West Northamptonshire Joint Committee’ (requiring four Members to be appointed by Council) is now strongly recommended to enhance the existing arrangements - with its remit limited to assisting development of governance and operational matters of any shadow authority and subsequent unitary council. The Joint Committee is required to be politically balanced as part of the Council’s overall committee structure.

 

The Joint Committee is designed to provide the partner councils with the opportunity to resolve a collective position in a timely manner. This is judged to be particularly important in order to maximise local influence on the somewhat technical next steps. Given the tight timeframe, this is particularly beneficial. An agreement to formalise the arrangements for the Joint Committee would be appropriate to produce for additional clarity.

 

The recommendations within this report allow the Joint Committee to be set up.

 

Alternative options

 

Option 1 – to carry out those items included within the Terms of Reference through each individual Council. The disadvantages of this option have been clearly laid out within this report; and it is consequently rejected.

69.

Monthly Performance, Finance and Risk Monitoring Report - December 2018 pdf icon PDF 916 KB

Report of Assistant Director: Customers and Corporate Services and

Assistant Director: Finance, Procurement & Property (S. 151 Officer)

 

Purpose of report

 

This report summarises the Council’s Performance, Risk and Finance monitoring position as at the end of each month.

 

Recommendations

            

The meeting is recommended:

 

 1.1        To note the monthly Performance, Risk and Finance Monitoring Report.

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Resolved

 

(1)            That the monthly Performance, Risk and Finance Monitoring Report for be noted.

Minutes:

The Assistant Director: Finance, Procurement and Property (Section 151 Officer) and Assistant Director: Customers and Corporate Services submitted a report which summarised the Council’s Performance, Risk and Finance monitoring position as at the end of each month.

 

Resolved

 

(1)          That the monthly Performance, Risk and Finance Monitoring Report for be noted.

 

Reasons

 

The Council is committed to performance, risk and budget management and reviews progress against its corporate priorities on a monthly basis.

 

This report provides an update on progress made so far in 2018-19 to deliver the Council’s priorities through reporting on performance, the Leadership Risk Register and providing an update on the financial position.

 

Alternative options

 

Option 1: This report illustrates the Council’s performance against the 2018-19 business plan. As this is a monitoring report, no further options have been considered. However, members may wish to request that officers provide additional information.

70.

Urgent Business (previously agreed with the Chairman)

To consider any items of urgent business.

Minutes:

There were no items of urgent business.