Executive Board

20th June 2016


Council’s Revenue Budget Monitoring Report


Recommendations / key decisions required:

That the Board receives the Budget Monitoring report.




To provide the Executive Board with an update on the ‘Near Actual’ position in respect of 2015/16.


Relevant scrutiny committee to be consulted: NA

Exec Board Decision Required                    YES

Council Decision Required                           NO



Directorate: Corporate Services


Name of Head of Service:

Owen Bowen


Report Author:

Owen Bowen




Interim Head of Financial Services




Tel No. 01267 224886


E Mail Addresses:






Executive Board

20th June 2016



Council’s Revenue Budget Monitoring Report



The Authority’s ‘Near Actual’ position for the financial year 2015/2016 is attached.



The near actual figures indicate an overspend for the year at departmental level of £33k. This has been offset by an underspend of £1,399k on capital charges and the resultant outturn means that the Authority forecasts a transfer of £280k to its general reserves.


Chief Executive’s Department

The Chief Executive Department is showing an underspend at year end of £296k. Corporate Savings proposals of £400k on Standby Costs and £100k on Health & Safety provision have not yet been implemented although this has been partially offset due to a one off sale of old printers as part of the printer rationalisation programme (£60k), an in year underspend of £264k as a result of energy budget rationalisation and £31k on vacant posts.

The Regeneration & Policy Division is underspent by £53k overall. There was a £226k underspend on vacant posts and a £48k underspend on the carbon reduction scheme. These were offset by a £63k overspend on Coroners costs, a £21k overspend on residual CCTV staff prior to cessation of service, a £22k overspend on Translation due to increased demand, £34k of essential equipment replacement, £21k contribution to set up costs of “The Hub”, £34k Nant Y Ci running costs as a result of proposed closure of building not taking place and £24k additional by- election and canvassing costs.

The Admin & Law division is underspent by £297k. This is mainly due to staff vacancies of £151k, additional Searches income of £40k, £24k in Admin supplies & services and a £76k underspend on Democratic mainly due to savings on allowances.

The People Management & Performance Division is underspent by £93k. This is due to £62k of vacant posts in year along with a saving on Business Support Supplies & Services costs of £34k.


Department for Education and Children

The Education & Children’s Services Department is projecting a net overspend of £735k at year end.


The main adverse budget variations relate to school based EVR and redundancy costs (+£793k); EOTAS (Education other than at School) (+£408k); Fostering services & support (+£160k); Adult & Community learning (+£137k); Corporate Parenting & Leaving Care (+£122k); Respite Units (+£119k); Out of Hours Service (+£60k) and Legal fees (+£53k).


These are partially offset by under-spends across the department in Staff vacancies, secondments and maximising use of grant funding (-£486k); Out of County educational placements (-£259k); Centrally managed schools budget (-£116k); School Meals (-£108k) and Children’s Services management & support (-£69k).


There is £609k available in departmental reserves leaving a shortfall of £126k at year end.



Corporate Services

The Corporate Services Department is anticipating an underspend at year end of £611k.


The Financial Services Division is underspent by £409k. This is due to £452k of vacant posts which is offset by a reduction in the recoverable council tax costs.


Audit, Risk and Procurement is underspent by £72k due to vacant posts.


ICT is underspent by £336k due to vacant posts in anticipation of a realignment along with delays in installation of network circuits and delivery of hardware.


 The Corporate Property Division is breaking even.


There is also an underspend on audit fees due to less grants being audited of £45k, an underpend on Rent Allowances paid of £86k and a £37k underspend on staff training. This is offset by an overspend on Miscellaneous services due to an increase in the bad debt provision. (£390k)


Department for Communities

The Department for Communities is forecasting an under spend of £8k for the year.


The Older People / Physical Disabilities Division has an underspend of £95k due to a reduction in  Home care  packages (£913k), staff vacancies within the Enablement service (£202k) offset by the non-achievement of efficiency savings re Older People Day Centres of £410k, overspend of £204k relating to Local Authority Residential Homes loss of residents contributions through lower placement & loss of potential flexi bed income and an overspend on Private Residential Care of £598k. There are other staff vacancies and operational savings of £192k.


The Learning Disability / Mental Health Division and Support Services has an underspend of £21k. There are  overspends on Direct Payments of £235k due to additional packages and  Employment & Training Day Services of £104k due to lower grant income due to a change in funding arrangements.  Progress is being made to achieve the savings on residential and supported living placements and this area has an underspend of £37k due to additional Welsh Independent Living Grant (WILG) and Health income. There are savings on staff vacancies  and other operational budgets (£323k).                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

The Housing Services and Public Protection Division is forecasting an overspend of £58k. This is due to staff vacancies and a reduced spend on supplies and services in Public Protection (-£67k) and an overspend in Council fund housing primarily on Supporting People services (£125k) as the development fund is required in future years as service is being re-configured.


The Leisure Services Division is showing an overspend of £49k.  Archives is over by £61k as a result of expenditure relating to the mould eradication contract. Burry Port Harbour is over by £15k due to increased dredging costs and a reduction in end of year stock at Pembrey Ski Shop accounts for £23k. These overspends are offset by a number of in year staff vacancies across the Division.





The department is showing an overspend of £213k at year end which will be met from its departmental reserves.


The Transport division is showing a net underspend of £55k for the year. Civil design is showing an overspend of £33k due to under recovery of income as a result of a vacant post, and the Park and Ride service is estimated to be overspent by £46k following a policy decision to remove funding.  Public Transport is anticipating a £36k underspend following service adjustments to manage budget pressures elsewhere within the division. There is also expected to be a £36k underspend in Car Parks as a result of an increase in income banked and a £64k underspend on school transport.


The Property Services division has an overall overspend of £253k. Building Maintenance is expecting to be £198k overspent due to non achievement of their income target as a result of a reduction in the Carmarthenshire Housing Standard related work. Repairs & maintenance of Parks and PCs are overspent by £31k as asset transfers have not as yet taken place and PAT testing £22k are overspent as there is no budget for these functions. Building Cleaning are anticipating an overspend of £42k due to an increase in overtime and superannuation costs. This is offset by a £62k underspend in the Grounds Maintenance section due to ongoing efficiency savings.


The Streetscene division has an overspend of £93k at year end. Flood defence is overspent by £37k due to non delivery of severance efficiency, Highway maintenance is overspent by £69k due to resurfacing works, Public Conveniences are overspent by £21k due to full extent of proposed savings not yet delivered until assets transferred, Cleansing efficiencies not yet met due to demand of £71k. These are offset by savings on licence fees at landfill site of £35k, a delay in improvement works at Ammanford Cemetary due to weather £21k and a £22k saving in rights of way as a result of a vacancy.


The Policy & Development division is overspent by £46k mainly due to £36k severance efficiencies not being delivered.


The Planning Division is underspent by £124k. Within the Planning division an overspend in Development Management due to a reduction in planning fee income of £29k is offset by a £46k saving on vacant posts , 2 members of staff being charged out to an externally funded scheme (£74k) as well as additional grant income of £14k.


Capital Charges

Reduced borrowing/interest savings, offset by Direct Revenue Financing provision.




The HRA is forecasting an underspend of -£1.9M to the year end for 2015/16.


Revenue repairs and maintenance -£167 due to poor weather conditions.

Supervision and Management -£78k, consisting of staff vacancies -£96k ,staff related travelling -£46k ,supplies & services costs of +£291k (matchfunding contributions/legal costs/postages/telephones etc.) and premises related costs -£90k (energy charges),recharges -£138k. Affordable Homes delivery plan will require staffing resources , which will be factored into the 2016/17 budget.


Slightly higher than forecast interest applicable to existing borrowing and buy-out from HRAS +£142k.

The capital programme is also underspent due to savings on some contracts (£1.9M)  and the requirement to roll forward on some contracts due the adverse weather (£1.8M).This has impacted on the direct revenue funding required in the budget monitoring by -£1.42M.

Improvement in delivering savings on void turnaround times etc. will save -£439k.

The requirement for provision for bad debt is -£394k based on current aged debt analysis and  write offs and other income items increased by -£23k






Lists of the main variances are attached to this report










I confirm that other than those implications which have been agreed with the appropriate Directors / Heads of Service and are referred to in detail below, there are no other implications associated with this report :


Signed:       Owen Bowen                                                            Interim Head of Financial Services                          

Policy, Crime & Disorder and Equalities





Risk Management Issues

Staffing Implications

Physical Assets 








1. Finance

Council Fund

Overall, the Authority is forecasting a transfer to General Reserves of £280k.


The HRA is forecasting that it will be £1,971k under its approved budget.



I confirm that the appropriate consultations have taken in place and the outcomes are as detailed below


Signed:      Owen Bowen                                                            Interim Head of Financial Services                                               

1. Scrutiny Committee – Not applicable

2.Local Member(s)  – Not applicable

3.Community / Town Council – Not applicable

4.Relevant Partners – Not applicable

5.Staff Side Representatives and other Organisations – Not applicable


Section 100D Local Government Act, 1972 – Access to Information

List of Background Papers used in the preparation of this report:



Title of Document

File Ref No.

Locations that the papers are available for public inspection


2015/16 Budget


Corporate Services Department, County Hall, Carmarthen