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Outstanding References

Report of the Town Clerk

Minutes:

The Committee considered a report of the Town Clerk which summarised the outstanding actions from previous meetings of the Committee.

 

OR1 – Medium Term Financial Plan

The Commissioner explained that due to staffing shortages, although the MTFP report would be submitted to the May meeting of the Police Committee, it would not be completed in time for submission to the Performance and Resource Management Sub-Committee on 26 April. (1)

 

OR2 – Premium Increase

The Chairman noted that the item had been removed from both the Policy & Resources and Finance Committee agendas, and that there had been discussions with their respective Chairmen confirming that an alternative approach for raising the issue would be preferable.  The Chairman noted that this had been raised as a Resolution to the Policy and Resources Committee when, rather, a note would have been more suitable.  He was, nonetheless content that the Committee’s views had been made apparent as a result.  The Chairman asked if Members felt this outcome was satisfactory.

 

A Member explained that they were surprised that the item had been withdrawn from the agenda and noted that it had not been made fully clear at the recent Ratepayers’ Meeting that a rise would be considered.  The Member suggested that a note be sent to the Policy and Resources Committee that highlights both the financial deficits identified by the Deloitte Demand and Value for Money Review and also the national appetite for support of frontline services, as illustrated by a lack of resistance to increased spending elsewhere in the country.  He emphasised the importance of recognising that the national mood is receptive to the increased cost of Policing.  The Member explained that, regardless of any identified efficiencies achieved, we can be confident that the net Policing costs are set to increase year-on-year for at least the next 3 years.  Given this outlook, it would be productive for the Corporation to take a view on this sooner rather than later, allowing sufficient notice for Business Ratepayers.

 

A second Member noted that the Police Committee has regularly highlighted the issue, and that the response was that it was not the Police Committee’s responsibility to dictate policy on the Business Ratepayers’ decision, but rather a question of Corporate Policy.  He suggested that whilst the Police Committee should accept this position, it retains the responsibility to highlight the issue for the attention of the Policy and Resources Committee to make an informed decision.

 

The Chairman agreed with Members statements and noted that historically the City Corporation has always been supportive with the funding to supply Policing sufficiently.  Members also noted that City Businesses were too supportive.

 

A third Member noted that, whilst the Corporation’s finances are determined on an annual basis, it might be preferable for the Corporation to set out a medium-term funding strategy for policing.

 

The Committee agreed to send a note to the Policy and Resources Committee highlighting the following (2):

 

              i.        The consideration of Business Rates is one of Corporate policy.

 

             ii.        That, regardless of any efficiencies achieved, net police costs are set to increase year-on-year for at least the next three years.

 

            iii.        The national mood is receptive to increased Police spending and this is illustrated by little resistance to increases elsewhere in the country.

 

OR3 – Police Budgets

The Commissioner requested further clarification over what had been expected following the discussion at the last meeting around this action.  He explained that it was understood that, rather than a written report as stated within the Town Clerk’s report, an infographic would be produced that provides a breakdown of the Police budgets, with an illustration of which areas were allocated from core funding.  The Chamberlain confirmed that this could also be included as an appendix feeding into the narrative of the Revenue and Capital Outturn report to be submitted to the July meeting of Police Committee and Performance and Resource Management Sub-Committee. The Deputy Chairman noted this would prove to be very useful given the short-term nature of funding. (3)


RESOLVED – That the report be received.

 

Supporting documents:

 


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