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Waverley Borough Council Committee System - Committee Document

Meeting of the Council held on 17/02/2004
Financial Strategy 2004/05 - 2006-07 : Budget Strategy 2004/05 : General Fund Capital Programme 2004/05



APPENDIX A.1

WAVERLEY BOROUGH COUNCIL

COUNCIL MEETING – 17TH FEBRUARY 2004
REPORT OF THE EXECUTIVE – 3RD FEBRUARY 2004

FINANCIAL STRATEGY 2004/2005 – 2006/2007

BUDGET STRATEGY 2004/2005

GENERAL FUND CAPITAL PROGRAMME 2004/2005

[Wards Affected: All]

Introduction

1. Initial proposals for the 2004/2005 – 2006/2007 Capital Programme were presented to the Executive on 2nd December 2003. These proposals totalled some 3.75m in 2004/2005 compared with the guideline of 2.15m contained within the Financial Strategy. Therefore, the Executive requested the Officers to advise its next meeting on 6th January which priority schemes should be programmed for 2004/5 for consideration by the Overview and Scrutiny Committees.

Observations from Overview and Scrutiny Committees

2. The following observations are those of the Overview and Scrutiny Committees: (a) Corporate More specific items were agreed as potential reductions for recommendation to the Executive, and these are set out in the table below:
** with regard to the IT budget, the Committee was unable to receive confirmation as to the level of IEG grant awaited from the Government and recognised that this would have an impact on the budget once announced. Concern was also raised about the importance of IT in the conduct of Council business and it was recognised that risks would be taken at cutting an essential part of the infrastructure.

(b) Community

(c) Environment and Leisure

The Committee considered the draft Capital Programme for the services within its remit and reviewed each item to see if it was either: essential, highly desirable or not essential. The Committee acknowledged most were essential, and the observations of the Committee on those items not considered essential are detailed below. Draft 2004/2005 Capital Programme

3. Officers have re-examined the proposed schemes for 2004/2005 with particular regard to the observations made by the Overview and Scrutiny Committees on 13th January.

4. Several schemes that were originally put forward to be undertaken next year are now scheduled for the following year. In other cases, the amounts allocated have been scaled down from the initial requests to levels more appropriate to the resources available. Schemes that enable the Council to fulfil its legal obligations remain unaltered, as do schemes that deliver the Council’s key policy objectives.

5. The rescheduled draft Capital Programme is attached at Annexe 1.

6. This rescheduled Programme is generally in line with the suggestions from the Overview Committees, with two exceptions. First, the previous figure of 20,000 pa. for Land Drainage has been removed to be replaced with appropriate sums for future schemes which may be approved in the future. This is in line with the report on Land Drainage Policy (see separate report of the Executive meeting on 3rd February). Second, the programme still provides for two replacement Environmental Health Service vehicles in 2004/5. Replacement of these vehicles has already been delayed for a year beyond the scheduled date and funding is provided from the Renewals Fund. Officers advise that it would be a false economy to delay replacement of one vehicle for a further year.

Information Technology Programme

7. The Information Technology programme is in accordance with Waverley’s statement regarding the Implementing Electronic Government Initiative. Waverley has been awarded grants of 200,000 in 2002/2003 and 2003/2004 to facilitate the implementation of this initiative. A further grant of up to 200,000 for 2004/2005 is dependent upon the outcome of this year’s submission. The outcome is still awaited. Officers will offer further advice regarding next years Information Technology programme when this information is received.

Three-Year Capital Programme

8. The amended proposals for 2005/2006 and 2006/2007 still exceed the resources currently allocated within Waverley’s Financial Strategy. However, there is scope for additional resources to become available in future years, although there are likely to be further competing demands on these including the possible need to finance an affordable homes programme.

Conclusion

9. The draft Capital Programme at Annexe 1 is broadly in line with the resource figure identified at Annexe 2. Certain schemes, in particular the Frensham Pond Dredging Project are the subject of external funding applications that could reduce the call on Waverley’s resources. The schemes reflect the priorities adopted by the Council as contained in various strategies including the Capital Strategy. The Programme includes several schemes that are necessary to comply with new legislation and initiatives. Although the Programme now recommended for approval has been reduced from the initial draft Programme, it nevertheless represents a significant increase on levels that have been achieved in recent years and includes a good number of new schemes.

10. The Executive accordingly

RECOMMENDS that

Background Papers (DoF)

There are no background papers (as defined by Section 100D(5) of the Local Government Act 1972) relating to this report.

comms/council/2003-04/050