Minutes of the Meeting held at the Parish Hall, Victoria Place, Brightlingsea

on Thursday 11th October 2018 at 7.30 pm

 

Present:

Councillors

G Steady (Chairman)

J Chapman, D Dixon, B Smith and J Russell

 

Also in Attendance:

Councillors M Barry and V Chapman

Tracey Pulford – Town Clerk/RFO

 

F.188   APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE: Councillor Block.

                                                                               

F.189   CONFIRMATION OF THE MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON THE 18TH SEPTEMBER 2018, RECEIVED BY COUNCIL ON THE 20TH SEPTEMBER 2018:

 

The Minutes were accepted as a true record of the meeting,

 

F.190   DECLARATION OF DISCLOSABLE PECUNIARY INTERESTS:

 

Members were reminded of the requirement to disclose any interest in relation to items on the agenda, when these are discussed.

 

F.191               STATEMENT FROM CHAIRMAN OF THE FINANCE COMMITTEE – COUNCILLOR STEADY:

 

A copy of the following statement made by Councillor Steady had been circulated to all members:

 

“I think it is prudent to review the council’s financial performance year to date. I reiterate that which I have said before that out of the three strands of local government, Town, District and County we the Town Council is the one which has not reduced the budget thereby maintaining and improving services and facilities. We have tweaked how we present our monthly financial statement and balances more changes will be proposed so that information will be more readily available. The Town Clerk and I are looking at ways to be more focused on overheads for different areas so that they can be more efficiently controlled. The three major items, which have been brought forward in the last six months, are, funding of the Lido, premiums being sought for lease renewals and accessing more S106 money. Putting the increase, in the councils finances, of £56000 which was achieved from 2016 to 2018, into the mix has made the councils financial position a strong one.

 

SPECIFIC FUNDING ANALYSIS EXAMPLE:

 

LIDO =           Refurbishment  –           £60,717

Legal Fees        –           £6,819

Manager           –           £4,166

Café lease Buy out –     £20,000       (to be paid back over 4 years)

 

TOTAL           –           £91,702

 

Achieved By

 

Surplus 2016/2018 –     £56,000

Premium for lease –      £20,000

S106                –           £12,200   (claimed in the last financial

year, paid in current year)

 

TOTAL           –           £88,200

 

Emerging issues that will affect the council’s finances in the future are

  • Participation in the Community Land Trust Scheme
  • Devolution of responsibilities from Essex County Council and Tendring District Council. All potentially having a call on the council’s finances.
  • Our policy of acquiring premiums for lease renewals and using council assets in a more efficient way could help to lessen the impact of any such call.
  • The challenge for the current council and more importantly, for the new council, after May 2019 is to be adaptable and pro active in the way council business is conducted.”

 

A discussion took place.

 

F.192   REVIEW OF 6 MONTHS BUDGETS FOR 2018/2019 AND ESTIMATES FOR 2019/2020:

 

A copy of the Estimates for 2018/2019 and draft Estimates for 2019/2020 had been circulated to all members. Members then went through the estimates as follows:-

 

Income – The revised 2018/2019 figure for income was £357,316 and the estimated figure for 2019/2020 was £337,332.

 

The Chairman briefed members that the Precept could not be set at the moment, until the necessary information from Tendring District Council is known

 

Expenditure – The revised 2018/2019 figures for expenditure are £358,458.00 and the estimates for 2019/2020 are £316,225.00.

The Chairman highlighted that this was the first draft of 2019/2020 estimates and that a surplus of income over expenditure of £21,107 was forecast.

 

Councillor Barry stated that there is not an amount in the expenditure budget for the Lido for 2019/2020 and stated that there was £30,000 in the budget for 2018/2019 and should be £20,000 for 2019/2020, which should decrease with the income from the cafe. He stated that it is vital that this amount is included in the 2019/2020 budget. The Chairman said that this will be looked into.

 

Improvements, Replacements and Refurbishments – The amount for 2019/2020 has been reduced to £10,000 to cover any items which may need to be purchased.

 

CCC’s and Special Projects – The amount for 2019/2020 has been kept the same as 2018/2019, so if there are any projects a member wishes to be funded, please put that project forward for funding.

 

Grants – Figures have been kept the same as for 2018/2019.

 

The Chairman mentioned that members did make a commitment to review the grants and the amounts given under the Standing Annual Grants and the Discretionary Grants. After discussion it was agreed that the grants budget would be looked at, in more detail, at a future meeting.

 

Salaries, Fees and Allowances – Updated using the NJC Payscales as agreed for 2018-2020.

 

Fees & Charges – Uprated by 3%

 

Recommendation: Any amendments, as detailed above, would be made to the budgets, in time for the next meeting.

 

F.193   S106 SCHEMES:

 

Councillor Smith gave an update on the Sufuse Project, and stated that the bids will be submitted in December, for £15M in total and the decision is likely within the first three months of next year. He briefed members on the Waterfront Square Scheme, and mentioned that Landscape Architects had been commissioned to produce drawings etc., which will be in the public domain in the next couple of weeks. Councillor Steady mentioned that the funding is 31% Council and 69% Sufuse grant funding.

 

Councillor Steady briefed members that he will be attending a meeting with Tendring District Council in the near future to discuss S106 monies. He mentioned that at the moment there is £194,000 in the pot, with another £62,000 due from Phase 2 of the Robinson Road Development. He mentioned that the following schemes are looking for S106 funding:- Lido, Hard/Fencing, Victoria Place Walls and Skate Park, however, Tendring District Council have also committed £130,000 on the toilets at the Western Promenade from these funds. He stated that members should be mindful that there may not be enough money in the pot for every project but added that the challenge for the Town Council would be to access as much money as possible from other sources.

 

F.194   CLOSE OF MEETING:

 

There being no further business, the meeting closed at 20.11 pm.

 

 

 

 

Received by Council on: 18.10.18                    Approved by Committee on:

 

Signed  by Chairman                                        Signed by Chairman

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