Your Councillors


Agenda item

First Quarter Financial Update and Performance Monitoring Report 2020/21

Minutes:

The Head of Finance introduced the report and highlighted that the current forecast overspend of £136k, which was higher than experienced in previous years due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This could be partly mitigated through additional government funding and the Council had now made its first claim under the Sales, Fees and Charges scheme. The variances were attributed in the main to the Depot, Licensing, Homelessness and Temporary Accommodation.

 

The capital net expenditure of £540k related mainly to the Brunswick and Union Street Housing Developments which were to be completed by the end of the year. Upon completion, the market rented properties would be under the control of Maidstone Property Holdings Ltd (MPH). The sale of properties from both developments were moving forward.

 

The Policy and Information Manager noted a correction to the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) of percentage of gas safety certificates in place on all residential properties from 97.94% to 97.33% and percentage of all electrical safety certificates on all residential properties from 98.02% to 100%. Two properties had denied the Council access to renew the gas safety certificates, due to the pandemic lockdown period. This had since been rectified.

 

The Policy and Information Manager informed the Committee that five of the fifteen targetable KPIS for did not reach the quarter one target, but that two of these achieved within 10% of the target. The number of households housed through the housing register missed its target by more than 10%.

 

The Head of Finance confirmed that £2million in government funding had been provided to the Council, with further opportunities to claim in the coming months.

 

The level of temporary accommodation available was discussed at length, in reference to the protections provided to tenants as part of the Coronavirus Act 2020. The Director of Regeneration and Place confirmed that the Council now possessed between 60-70 accommodation units, with capital programme funding to purchase atleast a  further 10 units. The Council had good relationships with several private sector providers that had been contacted in the past to provide temporary accommodation at short notice. There was confidence in the relevant teams to manage the situation should it arise.

 

The Committee were informed that the Council had not experienced a high-level of approaches regarding evictions and that this would be monitored with a predictive analytics tool that had been installed. A Member request was made to add this topic as an item to the work programme for further consideration if necessary.

 

The Director of Regeneration and Place would provide responses via email to queries that concerned the licensing variance within the revenue budget and social housing refusals from residents that arose from the property’s unsuitability.

 

 

RESOLVED: That

 

1.  The Revenue position as at the end of Quarter 1 for 2020/21, including the actions being taken or proposed to improve the position, where significant variances have been identified, be noted;

 

2.  The Capital position at the end of Quarter 1 be noted; and

 

3.  The Performance position as at Quarter 1 for 2020/21, including the actions being taken or proposed to improve the position, where significant issues have been identified, be noted.

 

Supporting documents: