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Agenda item

Revenue and Capital Budgets 2015/2016

To set the level of expenditure for Dartford Borough Council capital and revenue budgets for 2015/2016, approve the level of rents chargeable for Housing Revenue Account dwellings for 2015/2016, agree the level of Council Tax for Dartford Borough in its parished and unparished areas, to approve the Pay Policy Statement for 2015/2016 and to determine sundry related matters.

Minutes:

The General Assembly of the Council considered a report which set out the Council’s capital and revenue budgets for 2015/2016. The report, which included the revenue and capital estimates, identified the level of precepts for Kent County Council, the Kent Police and Crime Commissioner, Kent Fire and Rescue and the Town and Parish Councils within the Borough.

 

Members were asked to set the level of expenditure for Dartford Borough Council Capital and Revenue Budgets for 2015/16, to approve the level of rents chargeable for Housing Revenue Account dwellings for 2015/16, to agree the level of Council Tax for Dartford Borough in its parished and unparished areas, and to determine sundry related matters. Members were also asked to approve the Council’s Pay Policy Statement.

 

In accordance with Standing Order 16(4), a motion was proposed by the Deputy Leader of the Council, seconded by Councillor C J Shippam and carried, to allow extra time for Leaders of the Political Groups to deliver their speeches on the Budget report.

 

The Leader of the Council, Councillor J A Kite, informed Members that whereas some other authorities were seeking ways of freezing Council tax and developing services in advance of the forthcoming elections for political reasons this was simply business as usual at Dartford where Council tax had been frozen for six years whilst maintaining services. He thanked the Managing Director, the Management Team, and Finance officers for their help in developing the budget proposals and for their sound advice. He also thanked Tim Sams, Financial Services Manager, who had worked on his first full budget at Dartford. The Leader paid tribute to the work of Councillor Tony Martin, Deputy Leader of the Council and the Cabinet member with responsibility for Finance, for his hard work in preparing the budget and providing him with advice, and also thanked members of the Cabinet, his own Group, the Swanscombe and Greenhithe Residents Association and Members of the Opposition for their support. He stressed that Dartford remained a commonsense authority driven by meeting the needs of the people of Dartford in ways that were practical and achievable. This was reflected by recognising the economic pressures on local resident’s which had been met by freezing Council tax for the 6th year in succession whilst continuing to deliver core services and also being able to deliver a wide range of discretionary services and improvements to local infrastructure. He cited the achievements of recent years including improvements to Central Park, the Judo Centre, bowls facilities, and forthcoming facilities such as the opening of the new cricket pavilion at Heseketh Park, the refurbishment of the Orchard theatre and the re-opening of Fairfield Pool in spring 2016. 

 

The Leader of the Council announced the intention to hold a Spring and Autumn Cultural Arts festival pump-primed by the Council and support for initiatives such as the Dartford Litter pickers by establishing a fund to clean-up Dartford with £30,000 allocated for the town centre and £20,000 for out-lying wards.  The Leader also welcomed the building of the first new Council houses for 40 years funded by local people for allocation to local people in accordance with Dartford’s Allocations policy. He also felt that it was time to work with local businesses to take the town centre forward, building on previous successes, and felt that local people would recognise that they had been let down by the dramatic downturn in the fortunes of Tesco which had similarly impacted on 148 other store developments in other areas.   He stated that the budget and its predecessors in recent years had resulted in no increase in Council tax for 6 years, whilst delivering services and great capital projects which had changed the face of Dartford.

 

The Leader commended the budget to the Council and moved the recommendations contained in the report.

 

The Deputy Leader of the Council seconded the motion.

 

The Shadow Leader of the Council also thanked Council officers for their work and for assistance in their preparations for the meeting. He welcomed and supported a 1.5% pay award for staff. He highlighted the uncertainties about the Council’s future income, particularly given the year on year reductions in Revenue Support Grant and the uncertain future of the New Homes Bonus after the elections and the fact that a Labour government would review the effectiveness of the New Homes Bonus Scheme. The Shadow Leader also welcomed and supported the freezing of Council tax, the refurbishment of the Orchard Theatre and the imminent arrival of Aldi in the town centre, the first significant development since the opening of Prospect Place in 2003. Works to improve the infrastructure and street furniture in the town centre would also be welcomed. He lamented the lack of progress in Lowfield Street since 2003 due to Tesco but also felt that the Council had not had an alternative plan in place. He also commented on the draft Corporate Plan 2014-17 which had been considered by the Cabinet Advisory Panel recently and felt that this was vague, without concrete measures of success, and did not address current concerns. He said that this would be reviewed following the elections and before the July GAC. He also highlighted growing social inequality in the country and in Dartford and felt that there was a need to re-focus resources to this purpose. This would include putting in place a Child Poverty Strategy working closely with key partners. He lamented the impact of the Council Tax Support Scheme and the so called “bedroom tax” which he saw contributing to growing social inequality. He also felt that whilst the Council had become a “living wage” employer it should have been working with partners to become a “living wage authority” and encourage local business to behave morally in supporting this concept which would happen under a new administration.      

 

The Shadow Leader moved the following amendment to the budget proposals:

 

To add the following recommendation to the report:

 

“That two appendices to the 2015/16 Revenue and Capital Budgets Report are produced and published (i) on the Dartford Borough Council website no later than 5pm on Friday 27th February 2015, and (ii)  on the agenda for the GAC meeting to be held on 16 March 2015. These appendices will show:

      a.) 2014/15 projected outturn and actual spend to date from the Identified Initiatives Reserve. This appendix will include the details of the projects and initiatives monies in the Identified Initiatives Reserve have been allocated to.

      b.)  Any identified initiatives that will require funding from the Identified Initiatives Fund during 2015/16 and the projected level of funding each initiative will require

And that these appendices are included in the Revenue and Capital Budgets Report from 2016/17 onwards”

 

Additionally

 

Delete recommendation 3.11 and replace with:

 

 “That it be agreed that changes to the published figures for the level of funding that each identified initiative reserve initiative requires will be taken to and agreed by Cabinet.”

 

The amendment was seconded by the Shadow Deputy Leader of the Council.

 

The Shadow Leader noted that £2.5M was included in the Identified Initiatives Reserve (IIR) yet lamented that, for the second year running, there was no further detail of what this money was allocated for. He felt that this was not transparent and this was the reason for the proposed amendment.

 

The Leader of the Council explained that the IIR appeared as a single line in the budget because it was a reserve which was designed to operate flexibly in response to actual need, and had been used to fund some of the most needed and successful projects. All of this was open, transparent and obvious. The IIR allowed for rapid reaction to pressures and opportunities as they occurred. The Leader said that information on the use of the IIR had been released to the Shadow Leader when requested and that he was happy to engage with the Shadow Leader on this. 

 

The Shadow Deputy Leader explained that there was no reason for this not to be transparent and that the information should be openly available without the need to request it or make a Freedom of Information request. Recommendation 3.11 of the report did not allow this to happen.

 

At the conclusion of debate on the amendment a recorded vote was taken as follows:

 

 

FOR

AGAINST

Councillor D Baker

Councillor M J Bryant

Councillor Mrs S P Butterfill

Councillor S Doran

Councillor J S Hawkes

Councillor P Kelly

Councillor T Maddison

Councillor Mrs A Muckle

Councillor D Page

Councillor G T Prout

Councillor C M Stafford

 

Councillor Mrs A D Allen

Councillor A Bardoe

Councillor S H Brown

Councillor J Burrell

Councillor P F Coleman

Councillor R Currans

Councillor P Cutler

Councillor M J Davis

Councillor D A Hammock

Councillor J A Hayes

Councillor D E Hunnisett

Councillor K Kelly

Councillor J A Kite

Councillor E J Lampkin

Councillor A R Lloyd

Councillor A R Martin

Councillor D J Mote

Councillor J M Ozog

Councillor M I Peters

Councillor B E Read

Councillor Mrs J A Rickwood

Councillor Mrs R L Shanks

Councillor C J Shippam

Councillor M J Street

Councillor D Swinerd

Councillor Mrs P A Thurlow

Councillor A Wells

Councillor R J Wells

The Deputy Mayor, Councillor I D Armitt

The Mayor, Councillor A S Sandhu

TOTAL      11

TOTAL       30

 

The amendment was lost.

 

The Shadow Leader moved the following further amendment to the budget proposals:

 

To add the following recommendation to the report:

 

 

“That £10,000 is allocated from the Identified Initiatives Reserve – Feasibility Studies/works indicative allocation to enable this authority to support duties under the Child Poverty Act (2010) to prepare a borough wide Child Poverty Strategy with its relevant partners.”

 

The amendment was seconded by the Shadow Deputy Leader of the Council.

 

The Shadow Leader explained that at the end of 2013 it was reported that 21% of children in Dartford were living in poverty but that in some areas this was as much as 1-in-3 children whilst in other areas of the Borough the figure  was 1-in-10. No level of child poverty was acceptable but this also highlighted social inequalities in the Borough as a result of changes to welfare and frozen wages. The amendment was designed to start to address the issue of Child Poverty.

 

During the debate on the amendment the Leader of the Council argued that the amendment was flawed in that it referred to duties under the Child Poverty Act 2010 which were in fact duties of the County Council rather than the Borough Council. However he was also committed to dealing with Child Poverty and he highlighted the good work that was already being carried out with other authorities in Kent and through the Kent Chief Executive Officer’s Working Group on Child Poverty, work with troubled families and the development of projects which were available to all residents free-of-charge from which everyone benefitted equally. He also pointed out that there was no need for the amendment as the IIR allowed sufficient flexibility for resources to be allocated for this purpose without amending the budget and without placing an arbitrary limit of £10,000 on the funding available.  He also reminded Members that a cross party working group had previously been established to look at ways of dealing with Child Poverty and that if the Shadow Leader would withdraw the amendment he would give an undertaking that this group would meet again, with the Child Poverty Action Group, to look at this.

 

Other Members also highlighted the many examples of good partnership working with key health partners, Social Services, the police, Fire authority, YMCA, Job Centre Plus and other authorities. Other Members also felt that the figure of £10,000 was an arbitrary one and that they would be reluctant to spend money on a “piece of bureaucracy” when it could be spent more effectively on addressing the issue. Some Members however felt that irrespective of where the “duties” lay under the Child Poverty Act 2010 there was nothing to stop the Council seeking to enhance its work with other partners or looking to develop a local strategy. Also if the figure of £10,000 were to be insufficient there was nothing to stop further monies being made available at a future time if this proved to be effective.

 

 At this time it was proposed by the Leader of the Council and seconded by the Deputy Leader that there should be a short adjournment to allow the group leaders to discuss this matter and it was

 

            RESOLVED:

 

That there be a 5 minute adjournment to allow for informal discussion between the group leaders.

 

The meeting adjourned at 8.55pm.

 

The meeting re-convened at 9.00pm.

 

The Shadow Leader of the Council advised Members that in view of the informal discussions during the adjournment he was, with the permission of his seconder and the General Assembly of the Council, withdrawing the amendment.

 

The Leader of the Council then proposed an alternative amendment to the budget proposals in the following terms:

 

“That this Council is committed to the irradication of Child Poverty and to this end will prepare a Child Poverty Strategy.”

 

The amendment was seconded by the Deputy Leader of the Council.  

 

The amendment was put to the vote and carried unanimously as follows:

 

FOR

AGAINST

Councillor Mrs A D Allen

Councillor D Baker

Councillor A Bardoe

Councillor S H Brown

Councillor M J Bryant

Councillor J Burrell

Councillor Mrs S P Butterfill

Councillor P F Coleman

Councillor R Currans

Councillor P Cutler

Councillor M J Davis

Councillor S Doran

Councillor D A Hammock

Councillor J S Hawkes

Councillor J A Hayes

Councillor D E Hunnisett

Councillor K Kelly

Councillor P Kelly

Councillor J A Kite

Councillor E J Lampkin

Councillor A R Lloyd

Councillor T Maddison

Councillor A R Martin

Councillor D J Mote

Councillor Mrs A Muckle

Councillor J M Ozog

Councillor D Page

Councillor M I Peters

Councillor G T Prout

Councillor B E Read

Councillor Mrs J A Rickwood

Councillor Mrs R L Shanks

Councillor C J Shippam

Councillor C M Stafford

Councillor M J Street

Councillor D Swinerd

Councillor Mrs P A Thurlow

Councillor A Wells

Councillor R J Wells

The Deputy Mayor, Councillor I D Armitt

The Mayor, Councillor A S Sandhu

TOTAL      41

TOTAL       0

 

 

The Shadow Leader moved the following further amendment to the budget proposals:

 

To add the following recommendation to the report:

 

That £10,000 is allocated from the Replacement and Renewals Reserve to establish a new scheme, “Apprentices on Wheels”, which will support young people to access more readily employment and skills training within Dartford.”

 

The amendment was seconded by the Shadow Deputy Leader.

 

The Shadow Leader explained that he had recently met a group of young adults from the Princes Trust who were seeking to access apprenticeship schemes but who were finding the cost of transport a hurdle to attending interviews or securing places. The proposed amendment would fund a scheme to provide bikes and equipment for a group of 20 young people to enable them to travel for interviews and to take up places. Similar schemes had operated successfully elsewhere and if accepted, the proposed scheme would be reviewed after a year.

 

The Leader of the Council reflected that this could be a worthwhile proposal but that it lacked sufficient detail, background and costings for the amendment to be supported in its current form. He felt that it could be more appropriate to bring forward proposals via the Cabinet or the Policy Overview Committee where it could be given further consideration.

 

Other Members also commented that a more fundamental problem was being able to get local businesses to agree to offer apprenticeships in the first place and that there were insufficient opportunities available for those seeking apprenticeships.

 

The Shadow Deputy Leader commented that a similar scheme had been established in Merseyside and was working well. Other Members also commented on the lack of detail on the use of the IIR in contrast to this proposal which was designed to be an inexpensive and simple scheme to remove one of the barriers to securing apprenticeships.  

 

At the conclusion of debate on the amendment a recorded vote was taken as follows:

 

 

FOR

AGAINST

Councillor D Baker

Councillor M J Bryant

Councillor S Doran

Councillor J S Hawkes

Councillor P Kelly

Councillor T Maddison

Councillor Mrs A Muckle

Councillor D Page

Councillor G T Prout

Councillor C M Stafford

 

Councillor Mrs A D Allen

Councillor A Bardoe

Councillor S H Brown

Councillor J Burrell

Councillor Mrs S P Butterfill

Councillor P F Coleman

Councillor R Currans

Councillor P Cutler

Councillor M J Davis

Councillor D A Hammock

Councillor J A Hayes

Councillor D E Hunnisett

Councillor K Kelly

Councillor J A Kite

Councillor E J Lampkin

Councillor A R Lloyd

Councillor A R Martin

Councillor D J Mote

Councillor J M Ozog

Councillor M I Peters

Councillor B E Read

Councillor Mrs J A Rickwood

Councillor Mrs R L Shanks

Councillor C J Shippam

Councillor M J Street

Councillor D Swinerd

Councillor Mrs P A Thurlow

Councillor A Wells

Councillor R J Wells

The Deputy Mayor, Councillor I D Armitt

The Mayor, Councillor A S Sandhu

TOTAL      10

TOTAL       31

 

The amendment was lost.

 

The Leader of the Council then moved the following amendment to the Budget proposals:

 

“That this Council asks the Cabinet to consider whether a local “bike-to-work scheme” such as that implemented by Mersey Travel in Liverpool would enable more young people to access apprenticeships, and to seek funding for such a scheme if appropriate.”

 

The amendment was seconded by the Deputy Leader.

 

The amendment was put to the vote and carried unanimously as follows:

 

FOR

AGAINST

Councillor Mrs A D Allen

Councillor D Baker

Councillor A Bardoe

Councillor S H Brown

Councillor M J Bryant

Councillor J Burrell

Councillor Mrs S P Butterfill

Councillor P F Coleman

Councillor R Currans

Councillor P Cutler

Councillor M J Davis

Councillor S Doran

Councillor D A Hammock

Councillor J S Hawkes

Councillor J A Hayes

Councillor D E Hunnisett

Councillor K Kelly

Councillor P Kelly

Councillor J A Kite

Councillor E J Lampkin

Councillor A R Lloyd

Councillor A R Martin

Councillor T Maddison

Councillor D J Mote

Councillor Mrs A Muckle

Councillor J M Ozog

Councillor D Page

Councillor G T Prout

Councillor M I Peters

Councillor B E Read

Councillor Mrs J A Rickwood

Councillor Mrs R L Shanks

Councillor C J Shippam

Councillor C M Stafford

Councillor M J Street

Councillor D Swinerd

Councillor Mrs P A Thurlow

Councillor A Wells

Councillor R J Wells

The Deputy Mayor, Councillor I D Armitt

The Mayor, Councillor A S Sandhu

TOTAL      41

TOTAL       0

 

 

Councillor S Doran moved the following further amendment to the budget proposals:

 

To add the following recommendation to the report:

 

That £20,000 is allocated from the Identified Initiative Reserve Community Grants indicative allocation to enable essential repairs to the Swanscombe Pavilion Sports and Social Club.”

 

The Shadow Leader of the Council seconded the amendment.

 

Councillor Doran highlighted the invaluable work being carried out at the Swanscombe Pavilion for the local community. The Pavilion had been renovated a couple of years ago and it had been anticipated that the community events held there would result in ongoing running costs being self funding. However the heating system had failed before Christmas and it had become apparent that the problem was serious with a need for a replacement boiler, new pipework and flooring which the Pavilion could not afford to fund. A number of estimates had been obtained by the Pavilion management committee, the cheapest of which was £20,000. Without this expenditure there was a strong possibility that the Pavilion would have to close and that community events could no longer be held there.

 

The Leader of the Swanscombe and Greenhithe Residents Association explained that the Town Council had provided £30,000 to the Pavilion last year and had already been in contact with the Pavilion management committee about the current issues and understood that the cost of the works required were significantly higher than £20,000. He was also in discussion with the Leader of the Council about providing this much higher sum of money in order to make the repairs and to return the facility to its important community work. For this reason he could not support the amendment.  

 

Councillor Doran felt that local people were concerned about the length of time this could take and that a commitment to spend £20,000 now, which could just represent a start, would provide encouragement that this issue would be addressed.

 

At the conclusion of debate on the amendment a recorded vote was taken as follows:

 

FOR

AGAINST

ABSTAINED

Councillor D Baker

Councillor M J Bryant

Councillor S Doran

Councillor J S Hawkes

Councillor P Kelly

Councillor T Maddison

Councillor Mrs A Muckle

Councillor D Page

Councillor G T Prout

Councillor C M Stafford

 

Councillor Mrs A D Allen

Councillor A Bardoe

Councillor S H Brown

Councillor J Burrell

Councillor Mrs S P Butterfill

Councillor P F Coleman

Councillor R Currans

Councillor P Cutler

Councillor M J Davis

Councillor J A Hayes

Councillor D E Hunnisett

Councillor K Kelly

Councillor J A Kite

Councillor E J Lampkin

Councillor A R Lloyd

Councillor A R Martin

Councillor D J Mote

Councillor J M Ozog

Councillor M I Peters

Councillor B E Read

Councillor Mrs J A Rickwood

Councillor Mrs R L Shanks

Councillor C J Shippam

Councillor M J Street

Councillor D Swinerd

Councillor Mrs P A Thurlow

Councillor A Wells

Councillor R J Wells

The Deputy Mayor, Councillor I D Armitt

The Mayor, Councillor A S Sandhu

Councillor D A Hammock

TOTAL      10

TOTAL       30

TOTAL      1

 

The amendment was lost.

 

There being no further amendments Members continued to debate the original motion containing the budget proposals.

 

The Leader of the Swanscombe and Greenhithe Residents Association paid tribute to the strong working relationship that his group had with the Majority group which had not only delivered benefits for the people of Swanscombe, but also to Dartford in general. He welcomed the zero increase in Council tax and could see nothing in the budget that was not worthy of support.

 

The Deputy Leader of the Council thanked the Leader of the Council and the Finance Officers for their support both in preparing the current budget and the budgets over the previous 11 years. He stressed the achievements made against an uncertain financial and resource background in recent years whilst continuing to deliver services and applying prudent budgetary principles to the use of funding and reserves. This had been done by putting the interests of local residents first.

 

The Shadow Deputy Leader acknowledged the hard work and diligence of the Deputy Leader of the Council, who he understood, like himself, would not be standing for re-election in May. He commented on the irony of them both becoming Councillors on the same day as the result of a by-election and leaving office at the same time and wished him well. He also said that there was much to commend in the budget such as the work with the Dartford Arts Network and Dartford Litter picking and supported the freezing of Council tax, but reflected on the lack of transparency in the use of the IIR.  

 

At the conclusion of the debate on the original motion the Leader of the Council stated that it was a pity that some of the issues raised by the opposition had not been suggested in advance of the meeting in which case it was possible that they could have been worked up and included in the proposals. He also paid tribute to the work of the late Councillor John Muckle and missed his contribution to the budget process. He commended the budget proposals to the General Assembly of the Council.

 

The recommendations contained in the report were then voted on en-bloc by recorded vote as follows:

 

 

FOR

AGAINST

ABSTAINED

Councillor Mrs A D Allen

Councillor A Bardoe

Councillor S H Brown

Councillor J Burrell

Councillor Mrs S P Butterfill

Councillor P F Coleman

Councillor R Currans

Councillor P Cutler

Councillor M J Davis

Councillor D A Hammock

Councillor J A Hayes

Councillor D E Hunnisett

Councillor K Kelly

Councillor J A Kite

Councillor E J Lampkin

Councillor A R Lloyd

Councillor A R Martin

Councillor D J Mote

Councillor J M Ozog

Councillor M I Peters

Councillor B E Read

Councillor Mrs J A Rickwood

Councillor Mrs R L Shanks

Councillor C J Shippam

Councillor M J Street

Councillor D Swinerd

Councillor Mrs P A Thurlow

Councillor A Wells

Councillor R J Wells

The Deputy Mayor, Councillor I D Armitt

The Mayor, Councillor A S Sandhu

Councillor D Baker

Councillor M J Bryant

Councillor S Doran

Councillor J S Hawkes

Councillor P Kelly

Councillor T Maddison

Councillor Mrs A Muckle

Councillor D Page

Councillor G T Prout

Councillor C M Stafford

 

TOTAL      31

TOTAL       0

TOTAL   10

 

The motion was carried.

 

            RESOLVED:

 

 

1.            That the probable outturn and overall financial position for 2014/15, as set out in Section 6 of the report, be noted.

 

 

2.         That, in the light of the probable outturn of the General Fund for 2014/15, the estimated General Fund balance of £2.96m at 31 March 2015 be noted, as set out in paragraph 7.6.1 of the report.

 

3.         That the main changes to the General Fund Budget, as set out in Appendix A (ii) to the report, be noted.

 

4.         That the Council Tax requirement of £5,413,001 for 2015/16, as set out in Appendix B (i) to the report, be approved.

 

5.         That the Pay Policy Statement 2015/16, at Appendix P to the report, be approved.

 

6.         That an increase of 1.5% be applied to local salary levels and other relevant allowances with effect from 1 April 2015.

 

7.         That no increase be applied to Members’ and Mayoral allowances for 2015/16.

 

8.         That the Managing Director be given delegated authority to agree fees payable for elections as outlined in the Pay Policy Statement at Appendix P to the report.

 

9.         That the level of Mayoral allowances be based on a standard rate income tax payer, and this be adjusted to reflect individual tax circumstances, as required.

 

10.    That the fees and charges as set out in Appendix B (ii) to the report, be approved with effect from 1 April 2015, or from any alternative dates set out in the Appendix; that the Managing Director be given delegated authority, in consultation with the relevant member of  Cabinet, to set and amend fees and charges at Acacia to meet business demand and to set fees for the Dartford Festival and the Princes Park mini pitches.

 

11.       That the Managing Director be given delegated authority to determine individual sums to be met from the Identified Initiative Reserve in accordance with the agreed general purpose for which it was established.

 

12.       That the Managing Director be given delegated authority, in consultation with the  Chairman of Cabinet, to determine any expenditure funded from the New Homes Bonus.

 

13.       That the Community Grants budget, as set out in Appendix B (iii) to the report, be approved.

 

14.      That the Housing Revenue Account Budget, at Appendix C (ii) to the report, be approved.

 

15.      That the average rent increase of 2.2% for Housing Revenue Account dwellings, be approved; that the fees and charges relating to Housing Revenue Account properties, as set out in Appendix C (iv) to the report be approved. That the rent chargeable for pitches at Claywood Lane Caravan Site, Bean be increased by 2.2% from the first rent week in 2015/16.

 

16.      That the Corporate Property Maintenance and Improvement Programme be noted, as set out in Appendix E to the report, and the Managing Director be given delegated authority to vire between individual items during the year.

 

17.                  That the Capital Programme and budget for 2015/16 to 2017/18 be agreed, as set out in Appendices D (i) and D (ii) to the report.

 

18.       That the Medium Term Financial Plan shown at Appendix B (iv) to the report be noted.

 

19.       That the Treasury Management Strategy Statement shown at Appendix D (iv) to the report, and the Prudential Indicators shown at Appendix D(iii) to the report, be approved, and that the Managing Director be given delegated authority to borrow for capital investment purposes, in accordance with the Treasury Management Strategy, should it be in the interest of the Council to do so.

 

20.       That the Council agree to use its discretionary powers under Section 47 of the Local Government Act 1988 to implement the changes to business rates as announced in the Autumn Statement and that the Managing Director be given delegated authority to implement such changes providing the Government fully funds them.

 

21.      That the Managing Director be authorised to charge such sums which are currently anticipated to be met from revenue, balances or reserves, or capital accounts, to other accounts, as is deemed to be in the interest of the authority.

 

22.      That the budget amendment rules for 2015/16, as set out in Appendix G to the report, be agreed.

 

23.      That the special expense General Fund budget (parish precepts) as set out in Appendix K(i) to the report, totalling £1,111,082,  be noted.

 

24.      That the requirement of major preceptors, as detailed in Appendix K (i) to this report, be noted.

 

25.      That the CIPFA statement on the role of the Chief Financial Officer, reproduced as Appendix N to the report, be noted.

 

26.      That the financial threshold for the definition of a key decision, in accordance with Article 13.03(b) of the Constitution, be set at £500,000.

 

27.      That it be noted that, at its meeting on 15 December 2014, the General Assembly of the Council calculated the following amounts as its Council Tax Base for the year 2015/16 in accordance with regulations made under Section 31 B(3) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 as amended (the Act)

 

(a)          33,228.98 being the Council Tax Base for 2015/2016, for the whole Council area.

and

 

(b)          the aggregate of the amounts for dwellings in those parts of its area to which a Parish precept relates, as follows:

 

 

        £

Bean Parish

Darenth Parish

Longfield and New Barn Parish

Southfleet Parish    

Stone Parish

Sutton-at-Hone and Hawley Parish

Swanscombe and Greenhithe Town

Wilmington Parish                          

556.24

1,476.74

2,448.23

565.50

3,651.47

1,437.44

4,518.35

2,915.45

 

 

 

28.      That the following amounts now be calculated by the Council for the year 2015/16 in accordance with Sections 31 to 36 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, as amended:-

 

(a)  £50,135,275         being the aggregate of the amounts which the Council estimates for the amounts set out in Section 31 A (2) of the Act, taking into account all precepts issued to it by Parish Councils.

 

(b)  £43,611,098         being the aggregate of the amounts which the Council estimates for the items set out in section 31 A (3) of the Act.

 

(c)  £6,524,177           being the amount by which the aggregate at (a) above exceeds the aggregate at (b) above, calculated by the Council in accordance with sections 31 A (4) of the Act as its Council Tax requirement for the year.

 

(d)  £196.34                 being the amount at (c) above, divided by 27 (a) above, calculated by the Council in accordance with section 31 B (1) of the Act, as the basic amount of its Council Tax for the year (including Parish precepts)

 

(e)  £1,111,082          being the aggregate amount of all special items, i.e. the total of the parish and town council precepts, referred to in Section 34(1) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992

 

(f)  £162.90                 being the amount at (d) above, less the result given by dividing the amount at (e) above by the amount at 27 (a) above, calculated by the Council, in accordance with Section 34(2) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, as the basic amount of its Council Tax for the year for dwellings in those parts of its area to which no special item relates

 

            (g)       Part of the Borough's area:

 

£194.78          Bean Parish

£209.24          Darenth Parish

£190.71          Longfield and New Barn Parish

£177.69          Southfleet Parish

£237.27          Stone Parish

£228.92          Sutton-at-Hone and Hawley Parish

£273.53          Swanscombe and Greenhithe Town

                        £191.09          Wilmington Parish

 

being the amounts given by adding to the amount at 28(f) above the amounts of the special item or items relating to dwellings in those parts of the Council's area mentioned above, divided in each case by the amount at 28 (b) above, calculated by the Council, in accordance with Section 34(3) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, as the basic amounts of its Council Tax for the year for dwellings in those parts of its area to which one or more special items relate.

 

(h)  That the following amounts, given by multiplying the amounts at 28(f) and 28(g) above by the number which, in the proportion set out in Section 5(1) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, is applicable to dwellings listed in a particular valuation band divided by the number which in that proportion is applicable to dwellings listed in valuation band D, calculated by the Council, in accordance with Section 36(1) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, be the amounts to be taken into account for the year in respect of categories of dwellings listed in different valuation bands:

 

Bean Parish

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

129.85

151.50

173.14

194.78

238.06

281.35

324.63

389.56

 

Darenth Parish

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

139.49

162.74

185.99

209.24

255.74

302.24

348.73

418.48

 

Longfield and New Barn Parish

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

127.14

148.33

169.52

190.71

233.09

275.47

317.85

381.42

 

Southfleet Parish

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

118.46

138.20

157.95

177.69

217.18

256.66

296.15

355.38

 

Stone Parish

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

158.18

184.54

210.91

237.27

290.00

342.72

395.45

474.54

 

Sutton-at-Hone and Hawley Parish

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

152.61

178.05

203.48

228.92

279.79

330.66

381.53

457.84

 

Swanscombe and Greenhithe Town

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

182.35

212.75

243.14

273.53

334.31

395.10

455.88

547.06

 

Wilmington Parish      

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

127.39

148.63

169.86

191.09

233.55

276.02

318.48

382.18

 

Unparished Parts of the Borough

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

108.60

126.70

144.80

162.90

199.10

235.30

271.50

325.80

 

 

29.         That it be noted that, for the year 2015/16, the major precepting authorities have stated the following amounts in precepts issued to the Council, in accordance with Section 40 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, for each of the categories of dwellings shown below:-

 

Precepting Authorities

 

Kent County Council

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

726.66

847.77

968.88

1089.99

1332.21

1574.43

1816.65

2179.98

 

Kent Police and Crime Commissioner

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

98.10

114.45

130.80

147.15

179.85

212.55

245.25

294.30

 

Kent Fire and Rescue

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

47.10

54.95

62.80

70.65

86.35

102.05

117.75

141.30

 

 

30.       That having calculated the aggregate in each case of the amounts at 28(h) and 29 above, the Council, in accordance with Section 30(2) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, hereby sets the following amounts of Council Tax for the year 2015/16 for each of the categories of dwellings shown on the following page.

 


Bean Parish

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

1001.71

1168.67

1335.62

1502.57

1836.47

2170.38

2504.28

3005.14

 

Darenth Parish                                                            

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

1011.35

1179.91

1348.47

1517.03

1854.15

2191.27

2528.38

3034.06

 

Longfield and New Barn Parish                                          

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

999.00

1165.50

1332.00

1498.50

1831.50

2164.50

2497.50

2997.00

 

Southfleet Parish                                             

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

990.32

1155.37

1320.43

1485.48

1815.59

2145.69

2475.80

2970.96

 

Stone Parish                                                    

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

1030.04

1201.71

1373.39

1545.06

1888.41

2231.75

2575.10

3090.12

 

Sutton-at-Hone and Hawley Parish            

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

1024.47

1195.22

1365.96

1536.71

1878.20

2219.69

2561.18

3073.42

 

Swanscombe and Greenhithe Town           

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

1054.21

1229.92

1405.62

1581.32

1932.72

2284.13

2635.53

3162.64

 

Wilmington Parish                                          

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

999.25

1165.80

1332.34

1498.88

1831.96

2165.05

2498.13

2997.76

 

Unparished Parts of the Borough

 

 

A

 

B

 

C

 

D

 

E

 

F

 

G

 

H

980.46

1143.87

1307.28

1470.69

1797.51

2124.33

2451.15

2941.38

 

 

Supporting documents: