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Financial Strategy 2018/19 to 2021/22

Meeting: 20/06/2018 - Executive (Item 5)

5 Review of Financial Strategy 2018/19 to 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 90 KB

That Executive is requested to consider the draft Financial Strategy 2018/19 to 2021/22, as set out in Appendix A to the report, and recommend it to the full Council for approval.


Additional documents:


Decision that the draft Financial Strategy 2018/19 to 2021/22, as set out in Appendix A to the report, be approved and recommended to the Council for adoption.


Reasons for the Decision


The Financial Strategy, which was last approved in July 2016, had been fully reviewed and updated to reflect current circumstances.  The revised strategy had been extended to cover the period to 2021/22 and reflected the ongoing reduction in government grant and complete loss of Revenue Support Grant by 2019/20 as well as other pressures impacting the Council over the medium term.


As Council approval was required, the draft Strategy was presented for the Executive’s consideration prior to adoption by the full Council.


Alternative Options Considered and Rejected


To not carry a regular review of the Financial Strategy was not considered to be an option.  Since the Strategy covered the medium term, an annual review was required so that it remained up-to-date.


The Strategy examined the current influences and risks to the Council’s finances and suggested how these should be managed.  As such, the Strategy set out a number of alternative scenarios and sensitivities.


Key Points Arising from the Discussion


·       The Head of Finance and Business Services presented the report and revised Strategy which he said was aimed largely at reducing the overall funding gap of £1.6m on which work had already commenced.  He advised that the Council was seeking to reduce its reliance on New Homes Bonus funding.  He said that one approach was to generate additional income and the following agenda item, Hertsmere Developments Limited and Associated Matters, was a key example of this objective.


·       A non-Executive Member questioned the sustainability of generating additional income through commercial rents, for example.  The Finance and Property Portfolio Holder advised that all the Council‑owned shops were currently either fully let or under offer and assured him that the Council had raised rents to a level that was sustainable.  


·       Other Executive Members noted the commercially active nature of this authority and that the document would allow the Council to build on that attribute.


(Action:  Head of Finance and Business Services)