To receive the report of the Executive Director of Finance, Resources & Customer Services providing a Savings Monitor Update Report.
RECEIVED the report of the Director of Finance, Resources & Customer Services (No.87) presenting an overview of the savings monitoring process undertaken in determining the progress in achieving the savings for 2017/18.
1. The report was presented by Neil Goddard (Head – Budget Challenge).
2. This report provided an overview of the Savings Monitoring Process for 2017/18 and the appendices included within the report reflect the latest position on the savings.
3. As part of the Annual Budget setting process departments are required to find budget savings in order to balance the Council’s overall finances. At that point in time, finance categorise the savings in order of difficulty in achieving them using a traffic light system.
4. As detailed at 3.3 (page 25) of the report, a summary of the savings is produced as part of the Revenue Monitoring Process. The progress in achieving these savings is then reviewed each month and are categorised so as to compare them to the original classification. For 2017/18, the team have tried to enhance that risk based approach by introducing a numbering system alongside the traffic light system to add an extra level of detail to enable the team to focus on the high risk savings.
5. As part of the 2017/18 budget setting process, new savings which included increased income totalled £11.2M. The full year effects of previous year’s savings totalled £13.3M. Therefore, overall for 2017/18 the savings to be made totalled £24.5M. The appendices within the report (pages 29-31) summarise the latest position.
6. Of the £24.5M, 11% of savings are categorised as blue and fully achieved, 54% are categorised as green and are on target, 19% are categorised as amber and 16% are categorised as red (as detailed at para 4.3 of the report).
7. The savings classified as red or amber go through further scrutiny and challenge by using a pro-forma which the relevant budget manager is asked to complete. Managers are then asked the reasons for the red or amber risk classification i.e. are all alternative options being considered, are actions being taken to mitigate the risk.
8. The following issues raised in response to the report:
a. Appendix C (page 31) of the report highlights the remaining likely shortfall for the highest risk savings, as detailed in the last column of the table.
b. Councillor Simon raised the issue of SEN Transport, listed in the table at Appendix C (page 31). This had been a savings shortfall for some time.
9. The Chair thanked Neil Goddard for presenting the report.
AGREED to note the contents of the Savings Monitor Update 2017/18 and to refer the report to Cabinet as part of the September 2017 Revenue Monitoring Report.
To receive the report of the Director of Finance, Resources & Customer Services providing a Savings Monitor Update Report.
RECEIVED the report of the Director of Finance, Resources & Customer Services (No.128) presenting an overview of the savings monitoring process undertaken in determining the progress in achieving the savings.
1. The report was presented by Isabel Brittain (Assistant Director – Corporate Finance). At the last Committee meeting, Members had requested a status report of where the Council savings were for 2016/17.
2. The finance team had spoken to each of the directorates to go through their proposed savings. Approximately £13m worth of savings had been identified across the whole year for each of the service areas.
3. As detailed at the appendix on page 21 of the report, the team had rag rated each individual element in each directorate. The majority of those savings were deliverable and have been rag rated as green. A few of the savings, detailed at page 21-22 of the report, have been rag rated as amber and red. The application of SFA grant in skills for work service (page 21) is a small saving, rag rated as amber, due to the amount of income coming into that service and that the saving cannot be achieved within Environment and Regeneration.
4. The remaining red and amber rated savings are detailed on page 22 of the report. The two red categories listed are concerned with the provision of transport across the organisation. One of those is within the Adult Social care sector and the other one is within the Children’s care sector. These are two high pressure areas and is very difficult to achieve savings within these areas.
5. Many of the pressures in the 2016/17 budget are to do with demographics and the increase in children coming into Enfield, the ability to provide services for them and high need adults. So the high risk areas are those rag rated in red and where the Council are having to provide a service, the cost of that service is increasing and the Council are unable to contain those costs.
6. The following issues raised in response to the report:
a. Councillor Neville’s concern in terms of the numbers of children and people who are arriving in the borough with no recourse to public funds. This was being replicated in a number of other London Borough’s. As members, one of the things that should be done was to have a cross party agreement to actually lobby Central government because this was beyond the powers of the Local Authority to do.
b. Councillor Neville asked what the position about savings earmarked for 2015/16 was and if that was now fully accomplished. Isabel Brittain clarified that mostly that was the case. The report sets out the savings for 2016/17 and are on the whole achieving that.
c. Councillors Neville and Savva agreed that there should be a cross party lobbying of Central Government relating to damping. Not all 32 London Boroughs’ are affected and was about getting London Council’s onside by making joint submissions to the relevant Government Departments.