Agenda, decisions and minutes

Online Meeting, Response and Recovery Committee
Tuesday 16 February 2021 7:30 pm

You can view the individual reports for this meeting by selecting the headings from the numbered list of items at the bottom of this page. Alternatively you can view the entire agenda by selecting 'Agenda Reports Pack' below.

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Venue: This meeting will be broadcast live on the Council’s YOUTUBE CHANNEL

Contact: Fiona Cotter, Democratic Services Team Leader  Tel: 0208 547 4607/email  fiona.cotter@kingston.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

86.

Public Question Time

A period of up to 30 minutes during which any resident of the Borough or representative of organisations operating within the Borough (other than members of the Council) may ask questions on matters relevant to the Committee.

 

Questions must be submitted in writing to democratic services@kingston.gov.uk by 10am on the working day prior to the meeting (15 February 2021)

 

Minutes:

No questions had been submitted by members of the public.

87.

Petitions

To receive petitions which have not already been submitted electronically or in hard copy by Councillors or members of the public who live, work or study in the Borough. The petition must contain at least 20 signatures, and notice of the intention to submit the petition is given in writing to democratic.services@kingston.gov.uk by 10am on the last working day prior to the meeting.

 

Minutes:

No petitions had been submitted.

88.

Apologies for Absence and Attendance of Substitute Members

Minutes:

There were no apologies for absence.

89.

Declarations of Interest

Members of the Committee are invited to declare any pecuniary interests and any non-pecuniary (personal interests) relevant to items on the agenda.

Minutes:

Councillor Andreas Kirsch declared a significant other personal interest in item 8 on the agenda (Academisation of a Maintained School) as a Governor of the school in question, Chessington School, and indicated that he would withdraw from the meeting during consideration of this item.

90.

Minutes

To confirm as a true record the Minutes of the Meeting held on 26 November 2020 and 28 January 2021 and to authorise the Chair to sign them.

Minutes:

The Minutes of the Meetings of the Response and Recovery Committee held on 26 November 2020 and 28 January 2021 were confirmed as a correct record.

91.

Medium Term Financial Strategy 2020/21 - 2024/25 and Detailed Budget and Council Tax 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 81 KB

To set out the proposed budget for 2021/22 to 2024/25 and the detailed information required to enable this Committee to make recommendations to inform the Response and Recovery Committee’s recommendations to Council on 25 February 2021.

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED that:

 

1)       The comments of the Culture, Housing, Environment & Planning Committee and the Children and Adults Care and Education Committee be noted;

 

2)       The Executive Director, Corporate and Communities be authorised to make any necessary changes to the GLA precept in the Council Tax Calculation in Annex 3 of the Budget Report Pack to this report prior to submission to Budget Council, once the final decisions have been confirmed by that body;

 

3)       Council be RECOMMENDED to approve the budget proposals and Council Tax for 2021/22 as set out in the Budget Report Pack report and annexes;

 

4)       Council be RECOMMENDED to authorise the relevant officers to take necessary action to deliver the agreed budget and service changes, including increasing relevant fees and charges in line with inflation;

 

5)       Council be RECOMMENDED, in accordance with the requirements of the Local Government Act 2003, to note the comments of the Executive Director, Corporate and Communities in regard to the robustness of estimates and the level of reserves and balances as set out in the section “Comments of the Executive Director, Corporate and Communities (S151 Officer) ” in paragraphs 24 to 33 of the Budget Report Pack;

 

6)       Council be RECOMMENDED in accordance with sections 32 to 36 of the Local Government Act 1992, to calculate the amounts in the statutory Council Tax calculation, Annex 3 of the Budget Report pack) for the financial year 2021/22;

 

7)       Council be RECOMMENDED to approve the Capital Strategy including the detailed capital programme for 2021/22 to 2024/25 as set out in Annex 11 to Budget Report and the Treasury Strategy including the Annual Investment Strategy, prudential indicators and the Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP) policy as set out in Annex 12 to the Budget Report;

 

8)       Council be RECOMMENDED to approve the HRA 2021-22 base budget and proposal for growth and savings as set out in Annex 10 of the Budget Report Pack;

 

9)       Council be RECOMMENDED to approve the pay policy at Annex 13 to the budget report;

 

10)    Council be RECOMMENDED to approve the Schools Budget for 2021-22 in line with paragraph 16 and Enclosure 1 of Annex 14 to this report;

11)    Council be RECOMMENDED to approve the proposals outlined for the Central School Services Block (ref. paras 25-27) of Annex 14 to this report);

 

12)    Council be RECOMMENDED to approve the proposals outlined for the Early Years Block including the transfer of £162k to the High Needs Block (ref. paras. 28 - 33 of Annex 14 to this report);

 

13)    Council be RECOMMENDED to approve the proposals for the High Needs Block (outlined in Annex 14 paras. 34-37);

 

14)    Council be RECOMMENDED to approve the proposals outlined for the Schools Block (ref. paras 19-24 of Annex 14) and the Schools Funding Formula outlined in Enclosure 2 of Annex 14 and the Schools Allocations in Enclosure 3 of Annex 14 be approved, including a Minimum Funding Guarantee of +0.5% per pupil (ref. paras 21-22 of Annex 14).  ...  view the full decision text for item 91.

Minutes:

The Committee gave consideration to a report which contained recommendations in relation to the General Fund, Capital Strategy, Schools budget, Collection Fund and the Housing Revenue Account, the details of which, amongst other matters, were set out in a previously circulated pack of papers which set out the budget report for 2021/22 to 2024/25.

 

Late material had also been circulated which included the comments on the budget proposals from the relevant Strategic Committees at this time (the Children’s and Adults Care and Education Committee and the Culture, Housing, Environment and Planning Committee) including the recommendations of the Children’s and Adults Care Committee in respect of the Schools budget and the Culture, Housing, Environment and Planning Committee in relation to the Housing Revenue Account Budget.

 

Attention was drawn to paragraphs 7 to 15 of the Budget Report and the financial context that the council was operating in. This had been uncertain for a number of years due to short term spending reviews and had been increased by the significant pressures that the Covid-19 pandemic had brought and the continuing unknown impact of the country’s exit from the European Union. The Budget was designed to support the Council in meeting the significant challenges it faced in ensuring services for its residents and some of its most vulnerable communities were protected against a backdrop of increasing demand in terms of volume and complexity, decreasing resources available to fund those services and the ongoing financial challenges brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic.  Its main outcomes included:

 

·         Growth and investment in services to meet our key priorities and demand pressures of £11.535m

 

·         The identification of £7.415m of revenue savings, of which £3.093m are as a direct result of the Transformation programme.

 

·         An average council tax at band D of £1,693.57, a 1.99% increase in the Council Tax set by Kingston Council and a 3% increase in the Adult Social Care precept.

 

·         A general fund reserve of £19.633m for 2021/22 is held at the level of this year’s figure with no increase applied.

 

·         A Capital Programme to provide infrastructure investment in Kingston. The general fund capital programme over four years from 2021/22 will be £113.3m.

 

The Committee approved both the overall budget proposals and those relating to services within its area of responsibility. In so doing it noted areas of growth and budget reductions for services together with details of the Capital Programme including new schemes.

 

In making its recommendations to Council, the Committee had regard for the comments of the Section 151 Officer in paragraphs 24 to 33 of the Budget Report on the robustness of the estimates and the adequacy of the reserves which were considered adequate for the year ahead, assuming there were no amendments to the budget proposals which reduced the contribution to reserves or the overall level of reserves available.

 

RESOLVED that:

 

1)       The comments of the Culture, Housing, Environment & Planning Committee and the Children and Adults Care and Education Committee be noted;

 

2)       The Executive Director, Corporate and Communities be  ...  view the full minutes text for item 91.

92.

Transformation of Amy Woodgate House (WITHDRAWN)

This item has been withdrawn.

Minutes:

This item had been withdrawn following publication of the Agenda.

93.

Academisation of a Maintained School (Chessington School) pdf icon PDF 72 KB

This report seeks to brief the Committee regarding the proposed arrangements for converting Chessington School to academy status as part of the Every Child Every Day Academy Trust.

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED that:

 

1)    The Committee notes the expected conversion of Chessington School from Local Authority maintained to academy status as at 1st April 2021.

 

2)    The Committee endorses the granting of the long lease of the school building and land to the Every Child Every Day Academy Trust.

 

3)    The Committee notes and comments on the proposed arrangements in relation to the Sports and Community Use Agreement.

 

4)    The Committee agrees to the proposals regarding the finances of Chessington School as outlined in (confidential) annexe one.

Minutes:

(Note: Councillor Kirsch withdrew from the virtual meeting at this point and took no part in the deliberations on this item)

 

The Committee received and considered a report which briefed members on the proposed arrangements for converting Chessington School to academy status as part of the Every Child Every Day Academy Trust.

 

It was noted that Chessington School would be joining the Every Child Every Day Academy Trust from the 1 April 2021. Joining the Trust would provide the school with a strong shared education infrastructure and increased opportunities for resilience and development.

 

Under the Academies Act 2010, the Local Authority would cease to maintain the school on the conversion date. Any surplus in the school budget had to be transferred to the academy but there was no provision for any deficits to be transferred.

 

The report also highlighted that when a community school converted to academy status, the Secretary of State had powers under the said legislation to ensure that the Trust had continued access to land and buildings associated with the school. The expectation was that the local authority would grant a long lease agreement. It was proposed that the Local Authority grant a 125 year lease of the land and buildings to the Trust using the DfE’s model lease, which was designed to ensure a fair balance between the rights and obligations of the Local Authority as landlord and the Trust as tenant.

 

Chessington School also had access to, and used, the Chessington Sports Centre which was co-located within the Local Authority owned school building. This sports centre was used by the school as well as being a community sports centre. It was not proposed to transfer the sports centre to the school and the Committee had no comments to make on the proposal that a Sports and Community Use Agreement would be entered into between the Local Authority and the Trust to formalise future access and operating arrangements.

 

RESOLVED that:

 

1)    the expected conversion of Chessington School from Local Authority maintained to academy status as at 1 April 2021 be noted.

 

2)    the granting of the long lease of the school building and land to the Every Child Every Day Academy Trust be endorsed.

 

3)    the proposed arrangements in relation to the Sports and Community Use Agreement be noted.

 

4)    the proposals regarding the finances of Chessington School as outlined in (confidential) Annex 1 to the report be approved.

 

Voting:

Unanimous

 

94.

Appointment to Outside Body (Kingston Adult Education Board)

Decision:

Councillor Kim Bailey was appointed by the Committee as the Council’s member representative on the Kingston Adult Education Board for a period of office until May 2022.

Minutes:

(Note: Councillor Kirsch rejoined the virtual meeting at this point)

 

RESOLVED that:

 

Councillor Kim Bailey be appointed as the Council’s member representative on the Kingston Adult Education Board for a period of office until May 2022.

95.

Procedure Rule 30 - Urgent Decision pdf icon PDF 50 KB

To report for information on a matter of urgency dealt with in accordance with Procedure Rule 30.

Decision:

This information item was noted by Committee.

Minutes:

In accordance with Procedural Rule 30, the Committee noted a brief statement of the reasons why an urgent decision had been taken to establish a Kingston Coronavirus Winter Grant Fund.

96.

Urgent Items Authorised by the Chair

Minutes:

There were no urgent items.