Agenda and draft minutes

Overview & Scrutiny Committee Budget Meeting
Thursday, 31st January, 2019 7.30 pm

Venue: Conference Room, Civic Centre, Silver Street, Enfield, EN1 3XA. View directions

Contact: Stacey Gilmour 020 8379 4187  Email: stacey.gilmour@enfield.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

937.

WELCOME & APOLOGIES

Minutes:

Councillor Levy welcomed all attendees to the meeting.

Apologies for absence had been received from Councillors Huseyin Akpinar, Yasemin Brett and Nneka Keazor, also from Co-optees Simon Goulden and Tony Murphy. It was noted that Councillor Anne Brown was substituting for Councillor Akpinar.

938.

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

Members of the Council are invited to identify any disclosable pecuniary, other pecuniary or non-pecuniary interests relevant to the items on the agenda.

Minutes:

939.

LONDON BOROUGH OF ENFIELD BUDGET CONSULTATION 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 330 KB

Enfield’s Overview & Scrutiny Committee has set up a Budget Meeting to consider the proposals within the Council’s 2019/20 Budget Consultation.

 

The purpose of the Committee Meeting is to:

 

a)    Seek comments on and consider the Budget Consultation proposals,

b)    To prepare a response on the Budget Consultation proposals for consideration by Cabinet and Council as part of the budget setting process.

 

Members of the Committee are asked to note:

 

·         The public have been invited to attend the meeting to participate in the budget consultation process;

·         That Cabinet is due to consider the response from the budget consultation process at its meeting on 13 February 2019. The final response agreed by the Committee will be referred onto Cabinet for consideration as part of this process. The Council’s final 2019/20 budget proposals are due to be considered and approved at the Council meeting on 27 February 2019.

 

Minutes:

The Chair outlined the structure and process for the update and budget consultation.

 

Councillor Maguire introduced this item and spoke of the need to set a realistic, sustainable and achievable budget in the context of the need for continuing savings to be made. She said savings for this year had been identified in four tranches and this was the final tranche.  Member sessions had been introduced which were designed to challenge and interrogate the savings predicted.

She confirmed that Enfield was not alone in the country in finding further cuts challenging and stressed the need to be careful to protect the most vulnerable.

 

Fay Hammond, Director of Finance, gave a presentation.  

She spoke of the reasons why it was necessary to have a resilient budget-

  • to ensure we set a realistic budget and learn reduce the risks which have led to S114 notices being issued in other councils such as Northamptonshire CC. It is therefore important that we do not have an over reliance on capital receipts.
  • that council’s ambitious savings and income generation budget proposals have not always been fully realised
  • the 2020/21 funding review of all local authority funding is uncertain, and the quantum of funding will not be known until late in 2019.
  • under the CIPFA Financial Resilience Index, it is important that we ensure that Enfield reputation for good financial is upheld.
  • If we were to take no action, we would have no reserves by March 2020.

 

The other key points of the presentation were as follows:

  • The Budget as at December 2018 shows a reduction in grant and baseline rates of over £6m.
  • An additional £1m has been invested in Children’s Services.
  • For the past 3 to 4 years there has been an overspend on transport for children with SEN (Special Educational Needs), this is an example of where we are now recognising this cost pressure in the budget.
  • Additional funding received for social care and Better Care Fund of approx. £6.6m.
  • The proposals to balance the budget gap include efficiency savings, income generation, prevention of cost pressures and technical/ recharging savings.
  • There was a budget gap at December 2018 of £6m.
  • A summary of 2019/20 savings and income generation was given. ‘Place’ department have been a key contributor to the savings proposals for 2019-20.
  • Draft settlement was announced 14 December 2018. The budget consultation and waste consultation ended 7 January 2019.  Final settlement and London Council Business Rate Pool update is expected which would give more certainty over Business Rates.
  • At December 2018 there appears to be a £10.2m gap for 2020-21 this assumes no Adult Social Care precept and 1.99% council tax.  However, there is uncertainty regarding funding review. Themes are already under consideration for 2020-21 for future budget savings.
  • The Medium- Term Financial Plan (MTFP) covers planned council expenditure over the next four years and is to be agreed by Cabinet and Council during February 2019.  There is a need to have a ten- year MTFP to look at our long- term  ...  view the full minutes text for item 939.

940.

MINUTES OF MEETINGS HELD ON 7TH, 14TH AND 19TH NOVEMBER 2018 pdf icon PDF 197 KB

To agree the minutes of the meetings held on the 7th, 14th and 19th November 2018.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The minutes of the meetings held on the 7 November 2018, 14 November 2018 and 19 November 2018 were AGREED.

941.

POTENTIAL CHANGES TO WASTE SERVICES

To receive a presentation at the meeting from Doug Wilkinson, Director of Environment & Operational Services.

Minutes:

Councillor Levy introduced this item and mentioned that a report will be presented to Cabinet on 13 February 2019, on Potential Changes to Waste and Recycling Collections.

 

Doug Wilkinson, Director of Environment & Operational Services gave a presentation on the results of the feedback from the Consultation on the Waste Collection and Recycling service. 

 

He said the Overview and Scrutiny Committee on 23 October 2018 had put forward suggestions/ comments in response to the Call-in on this consultation.

Doug said they had taken on board feedback from the OSC meeting and spoke of the drivers for change to the service including:

  • The target for council-wide savings and income generation for 2019/20 was £18m with a further £12m for 2020/21.
  • Futureproofing – planning to meet the Mayor’s London Environment Strategy for local authorities which includes the need to recycle 50% by 2025, and a requirement for separate food waste collection.
  • Waste disposal and recycling treatment costs to increase
  • Making the service better by the introduction of additional weekly collections for separate food waste, to increase recycling rates, possible potential to reinvest into street cleansing and fly tipping service
  • The funding from DCLG to retain weekly collections has now ceased.

 

Councillor Levy referred to one of the suggestions put forward by OSC in October that the document should reflect pros and cons of options from a user’s point of view.  Doug Wilkinson stated that in the consultation we had provided the public with  information that was known at the time.

 

The following points were highlighted:

  • The DCLG funding ends this year, so the incentive for weekly collections has gone
  • The consultation ran for 10 weeks from 29 October 2018 to 6 January 2019. A total of 5,602 responses received which represents 5.5% of kerbside properties. The feedback from residents is to help inform any changes and to help in the design of any new service.
  • The consultation was available on-line and hard copies were also available at libraries. Assistance was made available to complete details at all libraries, Civic Centre and John Wilkes House.  Background information was provided and there was proactive monitoring of responses to ensure it was available to all.
  • There was face to face engagement and the local press was used including ethnic press. Posters went out and a digital campaign ensured different mediums were changed for social media to maintain interest.  Also, street surveys/ targeted digital campaign, to increase responses in hard to reach areas.
  • A negative response was expected to any of the proposals as people tend to be resistant to change, however the negative comments were useful as these provided an opportunity to address these issues.

 

Findings from the consultation including:

  • Highest responses were from EN1 and EN2 postcode areas.
  • Highest responses from British group (63%), higher than borough profile of 42% 
  • Lowest responses from age group of 18 29 years old, highest responses from 60 years plus.
  • 89% of responses were those living in houses, 6% of responses were from those living in flats.
  •  97% of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 941.

942.

DATES OF FUTURE MEETINGS

To note the dates of future meetings as follows:

 

Provisional Call-Ins

·         Thursday 7 February 2019

·         Tuesday 12 March 2019

·         Tuesday 26 March 2019

·         Thursday 11 April 2019

 

Please note, the business meetings of the Overview & Scrutiny Committee will

be held on:

·         Tuesday 12 February 2019

·         Wednesday 3 April 2019

 

Minutes:

Provisional Call-Ins -12 March 2019, 26 March 2019, 11 April 2019

 

Business meetings – 12 February 2019 and 3 April 2019

 

Councillor Levy thanked everyone for attending the meeting.