Report of the Chamberlain and the Director of Community and Children’s Services.
The Committee received a joint report of the Director of Community and Children’s Services and the Chamberlain, which compared the 2021/22 revenue outturn for the non-Housing Revenue Account (HRA) services, overseen by the Community and Children’s Services Committee, with the final agreed budget for the year. The report stated that the Director of Community and Children’s Services local risk budget was overspent by 249k, with an overspend on all risks including recharges of £1m. Members noted that, due to this adverse variance on local risk, there will be no requests for carry forwards this year for purposes of this Committee.
During the discussion on this item, the following points were noted:
1. The Director meets regularly with the Chamberlain in respect of high cost placements and the pressures on the Director’s Local Risk Budget. A higher overspend had been forecast but this had been reduced by savings achieved elsewhere.
2. The Committee would receive a budget estimate report towards the end of this calendar year. This Committee is responsible for overspends of the Director’s Local Risk but also needs to be of aware of pressures on the central risk.
3. The overspend of 632k in the Central Risk Budget relates to the unaccompanied asylum seeker budget. Numbers in the 18-25 year group are rising, and the Home Office grant doesn’t cover the City Corporation’s obligations to these individuals. This position has been reported through-out the year to the City Corporation’s Finance Committee and will be considered in the budget setting exercise in the Autumn.
4. This is a national problem and, despite extensive lobbying, very little progress has been made with central government. The Chair would be raising this matter at the Resource Allocation Sub Committee on 17th June.
5. The Director explained the challenges facing the small team at the City of London Corporation; i.e., staffing levels have increased in response to demand but this has increased financial pressures. The Department seeks joined up commissioning with other boroughs wherever possible, in order to achieve economies of scale.
RESOLVED, that – the revenue outturn report for 2021/22 be noted.