Agenda item

Medium Term Financial Plan 2023 Onwards




a)     That the contents of the report and the updates to the Medium Term Financial Plan be noted; and


b)     The approach taken to set the Asset Maintenance and Replacement Programme and Capital Programme Budgets for 2024/25, be endorsed.








Finance and Corporate / All




As set out in report.








The Portfolio Holder for Finance and Corporate introduced the report and highlighted that the MTFP to Cabinet in October had reported a potential deficit of £3.6 million for the financial year 2027/28.  Since then, there had been the Chancellors Autumn Statement and the impact of this had been reflected in the report.  Changes had been made to fees and charges and these had been incorporated into the plan.  The Provisional Financial Settlement had not yet been announced.


The Strategic Director Corporate Resources and Transformation highlighted that the report gave an update on the Medium Term Financial plan since the last report had been presented in October.  The Autumn Statement provided funding in relation to homelessness prevention and nutrient mitigation with the impact to this Council likely to be included within the provisional Finance Settlement.  The Statement had also extended the tax incentive window for tax sites, including the Solent Freeport, which could encourage more development within this area.


The Provisional Finance Settlement was expected by 19 December, but it was not expected there would be any significant surprises.


Section 4 of the report outlined changes to the General Fund, following the October update.  The latest forecast for 24/25 was a budget surplus of £241k and a forecast deficit to 27/28 of £2.9 million.  Section 5 of the report provided an update on the HRA.  A key area of work was in relation to the target of EPC rating of C or above for council owned housing by 2027 which was estimated to cost between £9-15 million.  Careful planning therefore needed to be made in relation to this.


The approach to fees and charges and the asset maintenance and replacement programme was also set out in the report.


A non-Cabinet member questioned the extension of the tax breaks for Solent Freeport and whether there would be any benefits for local residents, as the benefits to date seemed to be focused on businesses.  A response was provided from the Strategic Regeneration Advisor who acknowledged that the Freeports had been set up quickly looking at business led incentives.  However, over the last few months officers had been looking at outcomes in relation to skills and employment, infrastructure, environment and town centres.  Through the Waterside Steering Group, a delivery plan would be developed in legacy terms which would then be brought forward through the decision making process in the next 9-12 months.


A question was asked about progress toward the EPC C target for the Council’s housing stock, and how a lack of co-operation by tenants to allow the surveys to be carried out may be impacting the Council’s ability to deliver on the target.  The Assistant Director of Housing reported that the 2-year programme of surveys was expected to be completed in February 2024.  Around 500 properties had not had surveys carried out due to access issues.  It was expected that by January 4,000 properties would have valid EPC ratings.


Following a member question about the impact of the Autumn Statement and reviewing the impact of matters such as nutrient mitigation and the living wage, it was confirmed that work would be carried out to consider the impact to the Council.



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