The Charter Trustees of Poole achieved a favourable outturn position for the 2019/20 financial year, carrying forward reserves of £37,658 against a budget of £18,950.
The forecast for the 2020/21 financial year is that the Charter Trustees of Poole will underspend significantly against the budget due to reduced activity caused by the Covid-19 restrictions. The forecast is that £52,479 of reserves could be achieved in-year against a budget of £19,272.
The Responsible Financial Officer (RFO) presented a report which provided an update on the budget, a copy of which had been circulated to each Member and a copy of which appears as Appendix 'A' to these Minutes in the Minute Book.
The Charter Trustees were advised that the report covered three areas the first of which looked into the financial outturn for 2019/20. The RFO reported that at the August meeting of the Charter Trustees the high-level accounting statements had been approved and it was agreed that the detail of the statements would be submitted to this meeting. He explained that Appendix A to the report detailed the outturn position for last year against the approved budget which identified a contribution to reserves of over £37K and explained that there were significant savings in the civic budget and civic events budget. The RFO reported that the second part of the report looked at the 2021 budget highlighting that there was significant underspend due to the Covid-19 restrictions and if this continued it was expected that an additional £52K contribution would be made into reserves with closing reserves of just over £90k 72% of the annual precept. Officers recommended that arrangements be made for a budget workshop for the Charter Trustees towards the end of November in preparation for the budget for next year to take account of aspirations for Council tax, understanding the tax base, recharges and the use of reserves.
Councillor Butler sought clarification on the budget costs for accountancy services. The RFO explained that the budget was the same for both years and accountancy recharges were likely to be £1k as internal audit had not been included therefore there would be £500 for accountancy and £500 for internal audit) The RFO reported that the reduction of £100 assumed less VAT as from 4 November 2020 the Charter Trustees would be able to reclaim VAT on it supplies and services.
(a) The Charter Trustees note the budget outturn position for 2019/20.
(b) The Charter Trustees note the in-year budget position for 2020/21.
Voting on (a) and (b) – Agreed
Councillor Tony Trent abstained from the above decision as he had not heard the full presentation.
The Charter Trustees considered the nominations for the budget workshop. It was suggested that the Mayor, Sheriff, Sheriff Elect, budget signatories plus 3 other Trustees form the budget workshop. Charter Trustees were asked to contact the Deputy Head of Democratic Services to submit expressions of interest. Councillor Broadhead highlighted the opportunity for the Bournemouth and Poole workshops to co-operate with each other. The RFO reported that separate workshops would be sensible whilst asking similar questions there would be technical slides that portray the position of each Charter Trustee.
The Honorary Clerk reported on an issue raised by Councillor J Butt on the scales of reserves and suggested that a review would be accommodated as part of the budget workshop.
(c) The Charter Trustees support in principle the above arrangements to form a budget workshop in November to discuss the draft budget for 2021/22 taking account of the above comments.
Voting – Agreed