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Venue: Committee Room - 2nd Floor West Wing, Guildhall

Contact: John Cater
tel. no.: 020 7332 1426  Email: john.cater@cityoflondon.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Randall Anderson, Nicholas Bensted-Smith, Sophie Fernandes, Chris Hayward, Gregory Lawrence, Tim Levene, Oliver Lodge, Paul Martinelli, Robert Merrett, Susan Pearson, Henry Pollard and James Thomson.

 

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 1.

2.

Members' Declarations under the Code of Conduct in respect of items on the agenda

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

 

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 2.

3.

Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 166 KB

To agree the public minutes and non-public summary of the meeting held on 13th November 2018.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 3.

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the public minutes of the meeting held on 13th November be approved as an accurate record.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.

4.

Outstanding actions from previous meetings pdf icon PDF 72 KB

Report of the Town Clerk.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 4.

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Town Clerk which set out outstanding actions from previous meetings of the Committee.

 

Crossrail delays

The Deputy Chamberlain confirmed that TfL had yet to invoice the Corporation for the next payment of £25m. Discussions would take place once the invoice was received.

 

Painting in the City’s art collection

The painting was found to have been part of a bequest of a large collection, unfortunately, the provenance of this specific painting within that collection was unknown.  

 

Meeting with the actuaries

The Deputy Chamberlain confirmed that the meeting with the actuaries had taken place late last month; the Chamberlain would return to Members in due course, if a contribution to help mitigate the pension deficit.

 

Internal Legal Charging

The Chairman and the Deputy Chamberlain asked the Committee clerk to circulate the internal legal charging background note to all Members after the meeting.

 

RESOLVED – That the Committee notes the report.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.

5.

Finance Committee - Work Programme 2018 and 2019 pdf icon PDF 44 KB

Report of the Chamberlain.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 5.

Minutes:

The Committee received a Report of the Chamberlain concerning the work programme for 2019.

 

The Chairman noted that given no major reports were scheduled for March or October, there was a strong likelihood that those month’s meetings would be cancelled. The committee clerk would update Members in due course. The Chairman added that, given the work which had been devolved to the Sub-Committees in recent years, holding an average of eight Finance Committee meetings a year was optimal.

 

RESOLVED – that the Committee noted the Report.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

Report of the work of the Sub-Committees pdf icon PDF 46 KB

Report of the Town Clerk.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 6.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report of the Town Clerk which advised Members of the key discussions which had taken place during recent meetings of the Committee’s Sub-Committees.

 

The Chairman of the Finance Grants Oversight and Performance Sub-Committee noted that the Benefits-in-Kind work was ongoing, and officers were making good progress; in the past BIK had not been subject to sufficient and systematic scrutiny.

 

RESOLVED – That the Committee notes the report.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

6a

Draft public minutes of the Finance Grants Sub-Committee held on 13 November 2018 pdf icon PDF 65 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the public minutes of the Finance Grants Sub-Committee meeting held on 13 November 2018 be noted.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 6a

7.

Risk Management - Top Risks pdf icon PDF 67 KB

Report of the Chamberlain.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 7.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report of the Chamberlain which provided updates regarding the top risks within the Departmental Risk Register.

 

Focusing on CHB CP001 (Brexit risk to City Corporation procurement and supply

Chains), the Chairman asked officers to ensure the Procurement Sub-Committee are able to scrutinise work undertaken in this area.

 

On the wider outlook for Brexit, the City Surveyor informed Members that the investment property market remained buoyant.

 

RESOLVED – That the Committee notes the report.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.

8.

Central Contingencies pdf icon PDF 56 KB

Report of the Chamberlain.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 8.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report of the Chamberlain which provided Members with information regarding the current balance of the Finance Committee Contingency Funds for the current year.


RESOLVED – That the Committee notes the report.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

Overview of Central Risk Budgets and Relationship to Contingencies pdf icon PDF 71 KB

Report of the Chamberlain

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 9.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a Report of the City Surveyor concerning the Central Risk budgets and their relationship to contingencies.

 

The Chairman requested that a copy of the Report be circulated to all Chairmen and Chief Officers of the Grand Committees.

 

Additionally, the Chairman reminded officers that with the basic exception of carry forwards, in-year changes should be avoided, he reiterated that the core role of the Finance Committee is to monitor the original budget, and requests for additional funding should be transparent and scrutinised.

 

A Member raised concerns that, inevitably, situations would arise where emergency funding would urgently be needed to mitigate problems. It was difficult to predict with much accuracy what level of resources would be required when these events struck, citing the frequent cases of fly tipping in Epping Forest, the quantity of which fluctuated from month-to-month. The Chairman reassured the Member that the Corporation would retain a common-sense approach to urgent calls on contingencies, and stressed the variances, where justified, would not be viewed unsympathetically.

 

RESOLVED – that the Committee approved the following:

 

·         Agree that departments should in the first instance seek to re-prioritise local risk

budgets when unexpected pressures arise. And that any calls on the Finance

Committee contingency should only be allocated towards the end of the

financial year or in exceptional circumstances (see paragraph 3).

 

·         Note the relationship between central risk and contingency arrangements, in

particular that central risk budgets are for known volatile spend or income items;

contingencies are for unforeseen items of spend.

 

 

 

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.

10.

Proposed 2019/20 Revenue Budgets for Operational Services pdf icon PDF 429 KB

Report of the Chamberlain.

 

 

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 10.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a Report of the Chamberlain concerning the revenue budgets for operational services in 2019/20.

 

Members asked for more clarity on whether this was for Finance Committee to approve, the Chairman queried whether this was in fact a matter for the Resource Allocation Sub-Committee; the Deputy Chamberlain responded that Finance Committee had oversight over the whole financial picture, so the figures should be agreed by Finance Committee, Resources Allocation Sub, and P&R.

 

Members expressed caution that substantial increases were being slipped through. They requested officers be clearer about where the figures have started, and where they have moved since.

 

Turning to Appendix D, the Deputy Chairman requested that, going forward, more focus should be given to the capital side of the budget and less on the revenue side, the big projects will be coming on stream shortly and the focus should reflect this.

 

The Deputy Chamberlain added that it was also important to keep in mind the knock-on effect i.e. extra financial consequences from capital decisions.

 

RESOLVED – that the Committee approved the following:

 

·         Review and approve the proposed 2019/20 revenue budgets;

 

·         authorise the Chamberlain to revise these budgets, as set out in paragraph 16 for potential changes to central and departmental support service apportionments and decisions of the Resource Allocation Sub Committee in relation to the Additional Works Programme;

 

·         note the approved capital and supplementary revenue budgets.

 

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 10.

11.

Financial Regulations Update pdf icon PDF 65 KB

Report of the Chamberlain

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 11.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a Report of the Chamberlain concerning financial regulations.

 

RESOLVED – that the Committee approved the updated Financial Regulations, Part 1 as detailed in paragraph 8 of the main report.

 

 

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 11.

12.

Questions on matters relating to the work of the Committee

Minutes:

There were no questions.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 12.

13.

Any Other Business that the Chairman considers urgent

Minutes:

There were no urgent items.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 13.

14.

Exclusion of the Public

MOTION - That under Section 100(A) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Part I of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 14.

Minutes:

RESOLVED - That under Section 100(A) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Part I of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act.

 

 

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 14.

15.

Non-public minutes of the previous meeting

To agree the non-public minutes of the meeting held on 13th November 2018.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 15.

Minutes:

The non-public minutes of the meeting held on 13th November were approved as an accurate record.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 15.

16.

Report of the work of the Sub-Committees - non-public issues

Report of the Town Clerk.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 16.

Minutes:

The Committee noted a report of the Town Clerk which advised Members of the key discussions which had taken place during non-public session at recent meetings of the Committee’s Sub-Committees.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 16.

16a

Draft non-public minutes of the Finance Grants Sub-Committee held on 13 November 2018

Minutes:

The non-public minutes of the Finance Grants Sub-Committee meeting held on 13th November 2018 were noted.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 16a

17.

Action and Know Fraud Centre -Contract

Report of the Commissioner of the City of London Police.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 17.

Minutes:

The Committee received a Report of the Commissioner of the City of London Police concerning Action Know Fraud.

 

 

 

 

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 17.

18.

Major Projects Financing

Report of the Chamberlain.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 18.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a Report of the Chamberlain concerning financing for major projects.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 18.

19.

Bridge House Estates Strategic Review - Update

Joint Report of the Town Clerk & Chief Executive and the Chief Grants Officer & Director of City Bridge Trust.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 19.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a Report of the Chamberlain concerning the strategic review for  Bridge House Estates.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 19.

20.

Non-public decisions taken under delegated authority and urgency procedures

Report of the Town Clerk.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 20.

Minutes:

The Committee noted a report of the Town Clerk detailing a non-public decision taken under urgency procedures since the last meeting.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 20.

21.

Non-public questions on matters relating to the work of the Committee

Minutes:

Members considered a non-public question relating to the work of the Committee.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 21.

22.

Any Other Business that the Chairman considers urgent and which the Committee agree should be considered whilst the public are excluded

Minutes:

There were no items of urgent business.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 22.

23.

Employment Matters

Report of the Chamberlain

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 23.

Minutes:

 


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