Democracy - Agenda and draft minutes

Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, Town Hall, Ingrave Road, Brentwood CM15 8AY

Contact: Zoey Foakes (01277 312 733) 

No. Item


Apologies for absence


Apologies were received from Cllr Poppy with Cllr Russell substituting. 


Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 365 KB


The minutes of the Policy, Resources and Economic Development meeting held on 17th March 2021 were approved as a true record.


Chairs update pdf icon PDF 149 KB


Members noted the updates provided in the Chair’s report.


Digital Strategy - Action Plan - 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 276 KB

Additional documents:


The report sought to provide Members with an action plan for delivery against the Council’s Digital Strategy in 2021/22.


Cllr Hossack thanked all members of the team on behalf of the Members for the work undertaken on the new website.


After a full discussion, Cllr Hossack MOVED and Cllr Parker SECONDED the recommendations in the report. A vote was taken and it was RESOLVED.


Members are asked to:

Approve the Digital Strategy Action Plan 2021/22 as attached at Appendix A of the report.


Reasons for Recommendation

An action plan is required to ensure that we remain on track to deliver the objectives set out in the Digital Strategy 2020-25.


Outturn report 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 389 KB

Additional documents:


The report gave a summary of the overall financial outturn position for the financial year 2020/21. The key elements of the provisional outturn are:

General Fund

1) The outturn for the general fund is a net overspend of £243k against the set balanced budget.

2) In March 2021 it was forecasted there would be a deficit of approximately £361k.

3) Working balances reduce to £2.874 million this is still within the minimum level of reserves.

4) During 2020/21 the authority incurred net expenditure of £867k on the General Fund due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

5) General Fund earmark reserves have increased by £6.377 million to £10.781 million. Of which £6.042 million is committed for COVID-19 mitigation, £1.057 million is committed for specific future commitments, £1.738 million is committed for service level expenditure and £1.944 million is committed for future financial mitigation.


Housing Revenue Account

1) The outturn reflects a net underspend of £409k against the working budget. 2) The HRA working balance has increased significantly to £1.480 million as at the 31st March 2021

3) The HRA earmarked reserves remain at a level of £2.400 million

4) The HRA COVID-19 net expenditure was £345k. No government funding was received to support the HRA specifically for the pandemic pressures.



1) The capital outturn was £125.836 million compared to a reported revised budget of £143.282 million

2) Requested slippage of £12.388 million will be carried forward into 2021/22 3) The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in additional capital expenditure of £299k.


Treasury Management

1) The treasury activity and relevant prudential indicators for the year is listed in Appendix B.

2) During 2020/21 PWLB made changes to it’s lending terms criteria. Appendix B enhances on these changes. However, the Council continues to meet PWLB’s new criteria for lending.


The Annual Financial Statements were yet to be audited, until external audit finalise the audit process, these figures are subject to revision, however it is expected that these figures would not change.


This was an information only report so no voting was required.


Members asked questions to officers regarding the content of the report. 


Budget Guidelines & Financial Forecasts 2022-23 pdf icon PDF 486 KB

Additional documents:


The report sought the proposed budget timetable and guidelines that would be followed to develop the budget for 2022/23 and the financial forecast for 2023/24 to 2025/26. A 10-year financial forecast was included to assist members in understanding the longer term financial trajectory of the Council and to identify actions that could be taken to address the continuing deficit of resources over expenditure. These actions would assist Members in having to take decisions at future committees to address the budget gap. The 10-year forecast included various static assumptions and did not currently include the use of earmarked reserves to maintain working balances above the minimum required level.


This was an information only report so no voting was required.


Members asked questions to officers regarding the content of the report. 


Urgent Business


There were no items of urgent business and the Chair closed the meeting at 8.15pm.