Venue: Conference Room, Civic Centre, Silver Street, Enfield, EN1 3XA. View directions
Apologies for Absence (if any)
Members of the Council are invited to identify any personal or prejudicial interests relevant to items on the agenda. A definition of personal and prejudicial interests has been attached for members’ information.
1. Councillor Toby Simon declared a personal (non prejudicial) interest relating to consideration of the budget consultation proposals affecting parking charges. His interest related to the fact that he lived within the Enfield Town Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ), where proposals being considered included the introduction of Sunday charging. Councillor Simon remained in the meeting during the discussion on this item.
2. with the exception of 1. above, no members of the Commission had any personal or prejudicial interests to declare in respect of items on the agenda.
Enfield’s scrutiny function has set up a Budget Scrutiny Commission to consider the proposals within the Council’s 2011/12 budget information and consultation paper.
The role of the Budget Scrutiny Commission is to:
(a) seek comments on and consider the budget consultation proposals, as set out in the Council’s budget and information consultation paper;
(b) to prepare a response (on behalf of scrutiny) on the budget consultation proposals for consideration by Cabinet and Council as part of the budget setting process.
A programme for the Commission meeting has been attached. (Pages 3 – 4)
Individual Scrutiny Panels have been meeting in advance of the Commission, in order to consider the consultation proposals within their remits and feed any comments onto the Commission for consideration. The Panels have met on the following dates and the comments referred onto the Commission for consideration are currently being pulled together for circulation as a separate pack: To Follow
(a) Place Shaping & Enterprise Scrutiny Panel: 1 December 2010
(b) Adult Social Services Scrutiny Panel: 8 December 2010
(c) Children’s Services Scrutiny Panel: 8 December 2010
(d) Health Scrutiny Panel: 13 December 2010
(e) Crime & Safety Scrutiny Panel: 5 January 2011
(f) Housing Scrutiny Panel: 11 January 2011
(g) Environment, Parks & Leisure Scrutiny Panel: 18 January 2011
In addition a summary of the comments made on the budget consultation proposals at each of the Area Forums that will have met prior to the Commission is also being produced, for members information. To Follow
Members of the Commission are asked to note:
· that all scrutiny Panel members along with the public and representatives from interested stakeholder and partner organisations 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 Wednesday 9 February 2011. The final response agreed by the Commission will be referred onto Cabinet for consideration as part of this process. The Council’s final 2011/12 budget proposals are due to be considered and approved at the Council meeting on Wednesday 2 March 2011.
A copy of the 2011/12 budget consultation document has already been provided for all members of the Council, so no further copy has been included with this agenda.
Additional copies will, however, be available at the Commission meeting or can be obtained in advance by contacting Democratic Services (contact details provided above). A copy of the consultation paper is also available on the council’s website – www.enfield.gov.uk
1.1 Welcome & Introduction
Councillor Simon (as Chairman) welcomed everyone to the meeting and explained that the Commission had been set up to enable scrutiny to consider and co-ordinate a final response on the Council’s 2011/12 Spending Review and budget consultation proposals. As part of this process the Commission would take into account comments made by the Scrutiny Panels who had met to consider the consultation proposals relating to their specific remits.
The Chairman welcomed Councillor Taylor (Leader of the Council) and Councillor Stafford (Cabinet member for Finance, Facilities & Human Resources) along with James Rolfe (Director of Finance & Corporate Resources), who had been invited to attend the meeting to provide an overview of the budget proposals. In addition he welcomed those members of the Cabinet and Directors who were attending the meeting to represent each of the Council’s main service areas and respond to any questions raised during the meeting.
The Commission was advised that their comments on the budget proposals would be forwarded onto Cabinet (9 February 2011) for consideration as part of the overall response to the budget consultation process. These would be considered by Cabinet as part of the process in formulating the final budget to be recommended to Council (3 March 2011) for approval.
Before moving on the Chairman outlined the programme for the evening and thanked all members of the public present for attending and supporting the scrutiny consultation process.
1.2 Introduction to the Council’s 2011/12 Spending Review & Budget Settlement
Councillor Taylor (Leader of Council) thanked the Commission for inviting him and the Cabinet to attend the meeting. By way of introduction he highlighted the significant challenge needing to be addressed in relation to the uncertain economic climate and overall level of budget gap faced by the Council over the next 4 year period, following the Governments funding settlement for local government.
As further context to Enfield’s budget settlement and Spending Review James Rolfe (Director of Finance & Corporate Resources) gave a brief presentation. The key issues highlighted were:
(a) The final Government settlement for Enfield had now been received in which the Council’s 2011/12 & 2012/12 formula grant had been reduced by 15.5%. This grant allocation had been subject to a “damping mechanism and was also accompanied by a substantial reduction in grants (approx £7-8m) affecting a number of specific service areas, including children’s services.
(b) The Government’s Spending Review had been frontloaded which meant that the largest reductions in the core budget would be required in the first two years. The settlement had also only been confirmed for two years with further potential changes in grant distribution possible from 2013/14 onwards.
(c) The Spending Review being undertaken by the Council had been based on an estimated reduction of core funding averaging the level confirmed within the Government settlement spread over the 4 year life of the current Administration.
(d) Budget pressures on the Council identified in 2011/12 would add up to approximately £29m. £10.2m worth of savings relating to improved working practices having already been ... view the full minutes text for item 728.