Agenda and minutes

Extraordinary Meeting, Executive
Wednesday, 18th January, 2017 6.00 pm

Venue: Conference Room 1 - Fred Perry House

Contact: Jonathan Vali  (0161 474 3201)

Note: Extraordinary Meeting 

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 70 KB

To approve as a correct record and sign the Minutes of the meeting held on 20 December 2017.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Minutes (copies of which had been circulated) of the meeting held on 20 December 2017 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

2.

Declarations of Interest

Councillors and officers to declare any interests which they have in any of the items on the agenda for the meeting.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

No declarations of interest were made.

3.

Urgent Decisions

To report any urgent action taken under the Constitution since the last meeting of the Executive.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

No urgent decisions were reported.

4.

Public Question Time

Members of the public are invited to put questions to the Chair and Executive Councillors on any matters within the powers and duties of the Executive, subject to the exclusions set out in the Code of Practice.  (Questions must be submitted no later than 30 minutes prior to the commencement of the meeting on the card provided.  These are available at the meeting. You can also submit via the Council’s website at www.stockport.gov.uk/publicquestions)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members of the public were invited to submit questions to the Executive on any matters within its powers and duties, subject to the exclusions set out in the Code of Practice.

 

The Chair reported that one question had been submitted by a member of the public who was not present at the meeting. He confirmed that, in accordance with the Code of Practice, a written response would be provided.

Key Decisions

Additional documents:

5.

Medium Term Financial Plan Update (non-Key) pdf icon PDF 93 KB

To consider a report of the Leader of the Council (Policy, Finance & Devolution)

 

The purpose of the report is to present to Members the updated position on the Council’s 2017/18 to 2021/22 MTFP following the 2017/18 Provisional Local Government Finance Settlement (PLGFS). The starting position for the report is the MTFP reported to the Executive meeting on 4 October.

 

The report will inform the 2017/18 budget setting process including:

 

·         The discussions around the Council’s priorities and expected outcomes over the medium term; and

·         The development of a balanced and sustainable budget for 2017/18 and longer term forecasts to 2021/22.

 

The MTFP forecasts and assumptions have been updated to reflect new information becoming available since the 4 October and announcement made within the Provisional Local Government Finance Settlement. The consultation period for the Provisional Settlement finishes on the 13 January 2017 with the Final 2017/18 Local Government Finance Settlement expected to be announced in February 2017.

 

At this stage the Council’s 2017/18 forecast saving requirement is £5.312m rising to £52.595m in 2021/22. 

 

The Executive is recommended to:

 

·                Note the announcements made in the 2017/18 PLGFS and resulting impact of the Council’s 2017/18 to 2021/22 MTFP forecasts and assumptions;

·                Note the Council’s updated cumulative savings requirement following these changes; and

·                Approve the adjustments to the MTFP set out in the report and the Council’s revised cumulative savings requirement for 2017/18 to 2021/22.

 

Officer contact: Jonathan Davies, 0161 218 1025, jonathan.davies@stockport.gov.uk

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council (Policy, Finance & Devolution) submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) updating the Executive on the Council’s financial forecasts for 2017/18-2021/22 following the 2017/18 Provisional Local Government Finance Settlement.

 

The Leader of the Council highlighted the following developments:-

 

·         The Council would receive 4-year budget settlements, as previously reported.

·         The increase allocation of Adult Social Care Grant, funded from savings to the New Homes Bonus, would have a net benefit to the Council of approximately £0.5m in 2017/18.

·         The Government had announced an increase in the amount of Adult Social Care Precept that could be levied, although this would reduce the amount that could be levied in future years. Nevertheless, the Executive would propose to increase Council Tax and the Adult Social Care Precept to the maximum of 4.9% as this would better enable to Council to meet the needs of vulnerable people in the borough.

·         It had been agreed that the Council would participate in the Greater Manchester Business Rates Retention Pilot following assurances that this would not adversely affect the Council’s finances.

·         The revised provisional savings requirements were now £5.312m for 2017/18 rising to £52.595m in 2021/22.

 

Executive councillors emphasised the significant financial challenges facing the Council, but endorsed the need to increase the Adult Social Care Precept up to the maximum permitted for 2017/18.

 

RESOLVED – That in relation to the Medium Term Financial Plan Update:-

 

·         the announcements made in the 2017/18 Provisional Local Government Finance Settlement and resulting impact of the Council’s 2017/18 to 2021/22 Medium Term Financial Plan forecasts and assumptions be noted;

·         the Council’s updated cumulative savings requirement following these changes be noted; and

·         the adjustments to the Medium Term Financial Plan set out in the report and the Council’s revised cumulative savings requirement for 2017/18 to 2021/22 be approved.

6.

Medium Term Financial Plan - Executive Proposals 2017/18 pdf icon PDF 128 KB

To consider a report of the Leader of the Council (Policy, Finance & Devolution) and the Executive Councillor (Reform & Governance)

 

This report provides background information and updates on the development of and consultation on Executive proposals to address the spending reduction requirement for 2017/18.

 

In October the Executive received an updated Medium-Term Financial position and, in response, set out a series of working papers explaining initiatives that will shape a future reform programme and address wider challenges over the medium-term and business cases for proposed changes.

 

Following consultation and further development, this report presents updated proposals, the details of which are in the business cases at Appendices 2 and 3.  As set out at the October Executive, updated business cases in relation to the employee-related proposals were presented for decision to implement at the 20th December Executive Meeting.  Consultations in relation to resident facing proposals remained open until 21st December, therefore, updated business cases in relation to these are for decision at this Extraordinary Executive Meeting.

 

In particular, this report provides information on the outcomes of consultation and identifies areas of potential impact on residents, partners, the Council and its workforce (including those related to equalities) in relation to the relevant proposals, which are:

 

·         Waste Collection

·         Low Emissions Permits

·         Council Tax Discount Scheme

 

The Executive is asked to consider the information set out in this report and endorse the business cases at Appendices 2 and 3 for implementation in 2017/18, before taking the decisions necessary to meet medium term financial requirements.

 

In response to the clear preference of residents and in the context of a range of on-going discussions with other Greater Manchester Councils, the proposed changes to waste collection services will not be progressed.  The Executive are confident that the scope of, and options built into, previously scrutinised proposals, and the opportunity to consider the additional social care precept and where necessary phase-in savings associated with Stockport Together through the appropriate use of one-off monies, provide the basis to plan for a balanced budget in 2017/18.

 

The Executive is recommended to note the feedback received agree to the proposals that are in Final Business Case format and ask officers to proceed to implementation for 2017/18.

 

Officer contact: Laureen Donnan, 0161 474 3181

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council (Policy, Finance & Devolution) submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) setting out the results of the consultation on the Executive’s savings proposals for 2017/18 and inviting the Executive to approve the finalised business cases for these proposals including any amendments arising from the consultation feedback.

 

The report set out the feedback in relation to the following proposals:-

 

·         Waste Collection

·         Low Emissions Permits

·         Council Tax Discount Scheme

 

The Leader of the Council welcomed the significant consultation response and the positive engagement from the public and councillors.

 

In relation to Waste Collection proposal, the Executive Councillor (Communities & Housing) confirmed that following feedback the proposal would not be progressed. She also highlighted the review of the black bin usage had provided useful information about recycling habits. It was further reported that in light of the level of support from the public for recycling evident from the consultation, the Council would engage in a campaign to better inform the public about what could be recycled.

 

In relation to Low Emission Vehicle Permits, the Executive Councillor (Communities & Housing) emphasised that while the introduction of the policy had been successful, the improvements in new vehicle emissions had meant that this scheme was no longer as cost effective, and that the discount offered should therefore be reduced.

 

In relation to the Council Tax Discount Scheme, the Leader of the Council highlighted the broad support for changes to the current discounts (relating to unoccupied properties) and that the proposals would bring the Council in line with neighbouring authorities. He also highlighted that the proposals had been amended to take account of consultation feedback.

 

The Leader of the Council also stated that despite not proceeding with the waste collection proposals, the other proposals and business cases previously approved would allow the Executive to propose a balanced budget for 2017/18.

 

RESOLVED – That the feedback received agree to the Executive savings proposals be noted and that the proposals set out in the Final Business Case format be approved and officers be requested to proceed to implementation for 2017/18.

7.

Council Tax and Business Rates Discounts and Exemptions Scheme pdf icon PDF 95 KB

To consider a report of the Executive Councillor (Reform & Governance)

 

The Council is required to annually agree the scheme of local discounts and exemptions which are available against liability for Business Rates and Council Tax. This includes the localised Council Tax Support Scheme. 

 

This report summarises the impact of Business Rates and Council Tax discounts and exemptions and recommends changes to the scheme in respect of empty domestic properties, along with the implementation of an integrated policy around discretionary support for Council Tax payers.

 

The Executive is invited to recommend that the Council Meeting approve the following recommendations:

 

Business Rates Relief

 

·         That support continues for

·         CASC organisations as outlined at 3.5

·         Not for profit organisations as outlined at 3.8

 

·           That further support for Charities is limited to mandatory relief (see paragraph 3.6) and that any village shop entitlement (3.7) be considered under exceptional circumstances (3.11)

 

·           That the localised discount scheme for Town and District Centre businesses and large businesses new to or significantly expanding within the Borough as outlined in section 3.9 and 3.10 be maintained

 

·           That organisations and initiatives which are considered to be essential for the Council to achieve its priorities as outlined at 3.11 of this report continue to be considered for Business Rates Relief.

 

·           That relief for children’s nurseries (3.12) is limited to mandatory relief with any additional discount being considered under exceptional circumstances as outlined at paragraph 3.11.

 

Council Tax

 

·         That Stockport’s empty property discount scheme is amended for 2016/17 as described at section 4.5 of this report.

 

·         That Stockport’s Council Tax Support scheme is maintained for 2017/18 as detailed at section 5 and Appendix 6.

 

·         That the wording of the Council Tax Support Scheme be amended to clarify the treatment of Universal Credit in the calculation.

 

·         That the Discretionary Payment Budget be increased to £100k for 2017/18 along with the implementation of an integrated Discretionary Support Policy for Council Tax.

 

Officer contact: Alison Blount, 0161 474 5107, alison.blount@stockport.gov.uk

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council (Policy, Finance & Devolution) submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) inviting the Executive to consider the Council Tax and Business Rates Discounts and Exemptions Scheme for 2017/18. The Scheme had been amended to take account of the consultation feedback to the Council Tax Discount Executive Proposals.

 

The Leader of the Council emphasised that the scheme was broader than the proposals contained within the Executive Proposals, and that the Scheme retained a number of provisions that would allow the Council to respond to exceptional circumstances of individuals and businesses.

 

RESOLVED – (1) That in relation to the Council Tax and Business Rates Discount and Exemptions Scheme, the Council Meeting be recommended to approve the following:-

 

Business Rates Relief

 

·         that support continues for

·         Community Amateur Sports Club organisations as outlined at 3.5 of the report

·         Not for profit organisations as outlined at 3.8 of the report;

 

·         that further support for Charities be limited to mandatory relief (paragraph 3.6 of the report) and that any village shop entitlement (3.7 of the report) be considered under exceptional circumstances (3.11 of the report);

·         that the localised discount scheme for Town and District Centre businesses and large businesses new to or significantly expanding within the Borough as outlined in section 3.9 and 3.10 of the report be maintained;

·         that organisations and initiatives which were considered to be essential for the Council to achieve its priorities as outlined at 3.11 of the report continue to be considered for Business Rates Relief;

·         that relief for children’s nurseries (3.12 of the report) be limited to mandatory relief with any additional discount being considered under exceptional circumstances as outlined at paragraph 3.11 of the report;

 

Council Tax

 

·         that Stockport’s empty property discount scheme be amended for 2017/18 as described at section 4.5-4.8 of the report;

·         that Stockport’s Council Tax Support scheme be maintained for 2017/18 as detailed at section 5 and Appendix 6 of the report;

·         that the wording of the Council Tax Support Scheme be amended to clarify the treatment of Universal Credit in the calculation; and

·         that the Discretionary Payment Budget be increased to £100k for 2017/18 along with the implementation of an integrated Discretionary Support Policy for Council Tax.

 

(2) That the Borough Treasurer be requested to investigate the possibility of excluding additional types of businesses from the 2018/19 Business Rates off-set improvement scheme as a further mechanism to encourage developments that furthered the Council’s priorities.