Agenda and decisions

Cabinet - Wednesday, 1st March, 2023 5.00 pm

Venue: Steve Greenslade Room, County Hall, Usk

Contact: Democratic Services 

No. Item


Apologies for Absence


Declarations of Interest


Revenue and Capital Budget 2023/24 - Final proposals following scrutiny and public consultation pdf icon PDF 908 KB

Division/Wards Affected: All


Purpose: To update Cabinet with the consultation responses to the draft budget proposals issued by them on the 18th January in respect of the Capital and Revenue budgets for 2023/24.

To make recommendations to Council on the Capital and Revenue budgets and level of Council Tax for 2023/24.

To receive the statutory report of the Responsible Financial Officer on the budget process and the adequacy of reserves.

To receive the Responsible Financial Officer’s Prudential Indicator calculations for capital financing.

Authors: Peter Davies – Deputy Chief Executive (S151 officer);  Jonathan Davies – Head of Finance (Deputy S151 officer)

Contact Details:;

Additional documents:


That Cabinet considers the responses to consultation and recommends to Council:

a) The 2023/24 revenue budget as attached in Appendix G2.

b) The 2023/24 to 2026/27 capital programme as attached in Appendix H1. 2.2


That a 5.95% increase in the Band “D” equivalent Council Tax is used as the planning assumption in the budget model and to apply for County purposes for 2023/24, and that Cabinet asks that efforts are doubled to ensure that individuals and households eligible for council tax exemptions or reductions claim the benefit available to them.


That Cabinet approves changes to proposed saving and pressures, updated following public consultation, scrutiny and more up to date information being made available since the draft proposals were released on consultation on 18th January 2023.


That Cabinet approves the proposed changes to the capital programme and that significantly include additional highways capital investment of £0.5m for 2023/24 and a further £1.5m over indicative capital budgets from 2024/25 to 2026/27.


That Cabinet recommends to Council the undertaking of a review of property assets, to identify assets which are under-utilised, where costs can be reduced, income increased and sites re-purposed or redeveloped to meet the objectives set out in the Community and Corporate Plan.


That Cabinet considers the Responsible Financial Officer’s report on the robustness of the budget process and the adequacy of reserves issued under the provisions of the Local Government Act, 2003, together with an assessment of the current and future financial risks facing the Council.


That Cabinet adopts the Responsible Financial Officer’s report on Prudential Indicators.


That Cabinet requests that:

a) More regular budget monitoring and scrutiny is now undertaken, and with the monitoring and reporting of budget savings being strengthened in acknowledgement of the deliverability risk involved.

b) A financial strategy is developed and that is accompanied by a medium-term financial plan (MTFP) that looks to puts the Council onto a secure and sustainable path going forward.

c) Regular review is undertaken of the MTFP to ensure it remains up to date, and that it includes an assessment of evidence-based pressures and risks, underlying modelling assumptions and the ongoing affordability implications of the Community and Corporate Plan.



Division/Wards Affected: All

Purpose: To present to Cabinet for approval the 2023/24 Investment and Fund strategy for Trust Funds for which the Authority acts as sole or custodian trustee.

To approve the 2023/24 grant allocation to Local Authority beneficiaries of the Welsh Church Fund.


Authors: Dave Jarrett – Senior Accountant Business Support; Nicola Wellington – Children & Young People Finance Manager


Contact Details:


That the proposed Investment and Fund Strategy for 2023/24 for the Welsh Church Fund be approved.  


To delegate responsibility for the execution and administration of treasury management decisions to the Deputy CEO and Chief Officer for Resources (Section 151 officer) who will act in accordance with the Investment and Funds Strategy.


To approve the 2023/24 grant allocation to Local Authority beneficiaries to the Monmouthshire Welsh Church Act Fund of £200,000 which is to be distributed in accordance with population data in the draft Local Government Settlement 2023/24.


To endorse the policy that Monmouthshire County Council (as the Welsh Church Fund Trustee) ensures that the constituent councils that benefit from grant distributions, ensure that grants allocated are in line with charitable objects of the fund and that this fact is advertised on their Authority’s website.


To endorse the Welsh Church Fund Principles, Policy Considerations and Grant Allocation Criteria for 2023/24 as considered and approved by the Welsh Church Fund Committee on the 1st December 2022.


That the proposed Investment and Fund Strategy for 2023/24 for the Monmouthshire Farm School Endowment Trust Fund as set by the Trust be endorsed.


To note that the Monmouthshire Farm School Trust Board determined the 2023/24 grant allocation for the year in July 2022. However, this is reviewed at every meeting to ensure that the grants offered do not exceed previous years’ investment return at the end of March 2022, and any under spends carried forward from the 2022/23 grant allocation, thus to avoid eroding the overall fund.



Division/Wards Affected: All


Purpose: The purpose of this report is to provide Members with information on the Authority’s financial forecasts for the 2022/23 financial year in respect of the revenue budget, capital programme, and associated reserves position.


Author: Jonathan Davies, Head of Finance (Deputy S151 officer)


Contact Details:

Additional documents:


That Cabinet recognises a net improvement of £1.62m since the previous revenue budget forecast that results in a forecast over spend at month 9 of £7.53m.


That Cabinet note that this is driven primarily by incorporating the budget recovery plan into forecasts at month 9, along with substantial unbudgeted grant funding notified in respect of Children’s services that is significantly offset by further costs within the service.


That Cabinet note that the overall revenue budget outturn as currently forecast would need to be subsidised by £3.4m of capital receipts which are being used to fund identified eligible expenditure under the flexible use of capital receipts directive.


That Cabinet notes the update to the budget recovery plan as outlined in table 3. This projects that a draw on revenue reserves of £6.06m will now be required to ensure a balanced outturn position is achieved; representing an increase of £1.06m in the contribution anticipated to support the budget recovery plan from month 6.


That Cabinet recognise:

· the implication of drawing on the level of useable revenue reserves to this degree in 2022/23,

· the usage also being proposed to assist the 2023/24 budget,

· the trend of budgetary over-spends in high cost service areas, and wider economic uncertainty.


That Cabinet note the financial risk represented by the current volatile environment in Adult’s and Children’s services and require the respective Chief Officers and the Responsible Financial Officer to continue to closely monitor and manage operational and financial performance to ensure that all possible remedial action is taken to constrain cost and that this is reported to the Cabinet Portfolio Holder regularly


That Cabinet require the Responsible Financial Officer to make consideration of strengthening the reporting of budget forecasts and savings progress during 2023/24.


Cabinet considers the forecast capital outturn spend of £61.8m as outlined in appendix 1 that currently indicates a forecast over spend of £183k, noting the continuing difficulty in delivering capital projects to their allocated budget in the current challenging economic environment.


That Cabinet note the forecast 100% delivery of the budgeted mandated savings as detailed in appendix 2 and as approved as part of the budget set by full Council.


Cabinet notes the extent of forecast movements in Schools reserve usage contained in table 6, and appendices 1 & 3 which highlight the possibility of a further nine schools entering a deficit reserve position by the end of the financial year.


ECO4 Flex - Proposed Implementation Route for Monmouthshire pdf icon PDF 782 KB

Division/Wards Affected: All


Purpose: The purpose of this report is to seek agreement to declare a statement of intent that enables the Council to participate in the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) scheme known as ECO4 and ECO4 Flex.


Authors: Frances O’Brien - Chief Officer Communities & Place

Cath Fallon - Head of Enterprise & Community Animation

Debra Hill-Howells  - Head of Decarbonisation & Transport


Contact Details:




To agree to the publication of a Statement of Intent that sets out the eligibility criteria for Monmouthshire residents to access ECO4 Flex.


To develop an approved list of qualified and experienced companies able to deliver domestic energy efficiency measures throughout Monmouthshire.


To delegate authority to the Chief Officer Communities & Place, in consultation with the Cabinet Member to enter into any agreements that enable the maximisation of ECO4/Flex benefits, that do not result in any residual liabilities for the Council.