Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

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Cabinet Decision: 26th November 2009
Title of Item/Report
Q2 Improvement Report - Finance/Performance
Record of the Decision
Consideration was given to a report that outlined the Council's financial and service performance for the second quarter of 2009/10, 1st July 2009 to 30 September 2009 highlighting achievements against objectives in the Council Plan, the Local Area Agreement, the National Indicator Set, consultation activity undertaken, complaints, commendations and comments received and an update on the EIT Review program.

Members considered a table that provided details of the current MTFP position of each service. Recent reports had identified the difficult financial position facing the Council and officers were considering carefully expenditure in all areas. Details of some identified pressures and potential issues within services was provided.

Members noted General Fund Balances, Earmarked Reserves, Housing Revenue Account and the Capital budget.

In addition to the financial information members also considered information that provided a picture of the Council's performance against the National Indicator, the EIT Review programme as well as details of resident feedback on consultation activity undertaken.

Of the National Indicator measures where information was available at the end of quarter 2, 69% (78 indicators) across all themes were predicted to achieve targets or were within the agreed tolerance set, this compared to 83% at quarter 1. For the remaining measures (35) action was being taken to address areas of slippage. Details of achievements and areas of slippage were included in the thematic sections of the report.

The current Local Area Agreement (LAA) was 6 months into year two of the three-year agreement with Central Government. Good progress continued to be made against some very stretching targets particularly within a difficult economic climate. Of those measures where information was available at Quarter 2, 62% (25 measures) had achieved or were on track to achieve their targets, 15 measures had either slipped or were predicted not to achieve the targets at year end. Key areas where performance had slipped or was predicting to miss targets were the employment / benefit claimants, some educational attainment measures and timeliness in provision of care packages. All indicators within the LAA were being closely tracked particularly those impacted by the current economic conditions. This was to ensure that we were best placed to understand our current position leading into the annual review and refresh of the LAA, which would be renegotiated with Government Office North East during the months of November to January 2010. Guidance on the negotiation process was still awaited from Central Government, which would provide us with a clearer picture of which measures and targets for 2010/11 we can revisit. Details of the achievements and areas of slippage within the LAA were provided.

Members noted progress against the Council Plan as a whole and for each theme.

RECOMMENDED to Council that

1. the overall report be noted.
2. the revised MTFP be approved.
3. the level of working balances be approved.
4. the re-profiled Capital Programme be approved
Reasons for the Decision
To inform members of the current financial position and performance issues.
Alternative Options Considered and Rejected
Declared (Cabinet Member) Conflicts of Interest
Details of any Dispensations
Not applicable
Date and Time by which Call In must be executed
Not applicable

Date of Publication: 30 November 2009

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