Skip navigation Home Page News and Events Help Complaints Legal Information Contact Us Top of Page

Agenda item

Quarter Three: Forecast of Revenue and Capital Outturn 2018/19

Joint Report of the Corporate Director of Regeneration and Local Services and the Corporate Director of Resources – Principal Accountant, Resources.


The Chairman introduced the Principal Accountant, Paul Raine to speak to Members in relation to the Quarter Three, 2018/19 Revenue and Capital Outturn (for copy see file of minutes).


The Principal Accountant reminded Members of the areas reported upon, the General Fund Revenue Account, and the Capital Programme for the Regeneration and Local Services Service. 



The Principal Accountant referred Members to the information relating to Quarter Three 2018/19 with the service reporting a forecast underspend of approximately £1.277 million, against a revised budget of £57.724 million.  Members noted the major variances were set out within the report and that the service grouping was on track to maintain spending within the cash limit and more details were contained within Appendix Two to the report.


As regards the Capital Programme, the Principal Accountant explained that the revised budget stood at £42.438 million, with a breakdown of the major capital projects given at Appendix Three to the report.  Members noted the spend to date of £22.632 million and the Principal Accountant explained some projects would move forward to the 2019/20 budget, details to be provided to Members in due course. 


The Chairman thanked the Principal Accountant and asked Members for their comments and questions.

Councillor P Howell noted in terms of the capital programme that he felt investment was better for residents and therefore any lag in the programme was a concern.  He noted he wished for more details in terms of delays.  In reference to the revenue budget, Councillor P Howell noted the year to date position was £15.017 million compared to a forecast outturn of £56.802 million and asked how this could be explained in order to help the public understand.  He also asked as regards the variance in relation to employees, being £90,000 in Quarter Two and £700,000 for Quarter Three.  Councillor P Howell noted reference to “posts not filled” and asked whether this was strategic in terms of savings, or a lack of good recruitment.


The Principal Accountant noted with reference to employees, the apparent jump was in part due to delays in appointments, and with part being in terms of medium term financial plan (MTFP) savings.  Councillor P Howell asked if the process was managed.  Councillor R Crute noted that information as regards officer posts was reported at the Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Management Board, and the capital programme was monitored monthly and was on spend at the moment.


Mrs R Morris noted she had raised an issue of “early alerts” at a previous meeting and asked if this was an area to look at.  The Principal Accountant explained that in terms of recruitment, there was the process to go through and in some cases, there could be a delay.  Mrs R Morris noted she understood this, however, in cases where there were unfilled positions, perhaps there was a need for hard decisions in terms of whether posts needed to be filled, especially if it proves to be problematic to recruit to a post.  The Principal Accountant noted that would be an issue for each Service to look at as they would still need to be able to deliver their functions.


Councillor J Atkinson noted on page 65 of the report an overspend of £248,000 in relation to Economic Development and asked for further information.  The Principal Accountant explained that this related to Employment and Skills and part related to European Union Grant, he noted that outcome payments were less than anticipated and further information would be sought.


Councillor E Adam noted that within Appendix Three there was reference to renewable energy and asked for further information.  The Principal Accountant noted the overspend at the moment was £20,000 and further information would be set out at the year end.  Councillor E Adam noted information as regards which scheme had overspends would be useful.


Councillor S Dunn noted on page 67 there was reference to “blacksmiths” within the Strategic Transport information.  The Principal Accountant noted that this was in reference to fleet management and would be noted accordingly in future.

Councillor J Atkinson referred to page 67 and traffic income and asked for further information.  The Principal Accountant noted that if there was development in an area, there could be requirements from the Highways Section in terms of improvements such as traffic signals.




That the report be noted.


Supporting documents:


Democratic Services
Durham County Council
County Hall
County Durham
03000 269 714