Agenda and minutes

Healthier Communities Overview and Scrutiny Committee - Monday, 14th February, 2022 9.30 am

Venue: Zoom

No. Item


Apologies and Personal Matters


Councillors Mark Strong, Paul Hinge and Ivor Williams apologised for their inability to attend the meeting. 


The Chairman extended his sincere condolences to the family of Lorelei Bernice Marka who recently passed away.  Lorelei worked as a Dog Warden for the Authority for many years.


The Chairman also extended his sincere condolences to Justin Davies, (Corporate Manager, Core Finance, Finance & Procurement), and                 Nicola Davies, (Translator for the Authority) on the recent passing of Nicola’s Mother, Mrs Angela Rogers-Lewis, Justin’s Mother-in-Law.


The Chairman also extended his Best Wishes to James Thomas, son of Councillor Lynford Thomas who is currently recuperating following hospital treatment.



Disclosure of Personal/Prejudicial Interests (including whipping declarations) Members are reminded of their personal responsibility to declare any personal and prejudicial interest in respect of matters contained in this agenda in accordance with the provisions of the Local Government Act 2000, the Council’s Constitution and the Members Code of Conduct. In addition, Members must declare any prohibited party whip which the Member has been given in relation to the meeting as per the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011.


There were no disclosures of personal or prejudicial interests.


Report on the draft Budget for 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 3 MB


Councillor Bryan Davies, Committee Chair, outlined the meeting procedure and

  welcomed the Leader of the Council, Councillor Ellen ap Gwynn, Cabinet

  Members and Officers to the meeting.


The Leader of the Council, Councillor Ellen ap Gwynn, presented the report on the draft budget for 2022/2023 including the three year capital programme, explaining that this is a provisional settlement, and that the final settlement is due on the 1st March, 2022. The total revenue settlement, known as the Aggregate External Finance (AEF) allocated to Ceredigion for 2022/23 is £119.419m.  This compares with 2021/22 allocation of £110.006m (adjusted for transfers) and is an increase of 8.6%. Wales as a whole has seen an average increase of 9.4% with Ceredigion ranked at 19th. The Leader advised Committee Members that since her appointment in 2012, £50 million savings had been made.


Ceredigion’s Settlement reflects a range of less financially favourable re-distributional movements seen in population and Secondary School pupil number indicators. Standard Spending Assessments (SSA) are notional calculations of what each Council needs to spend to provide a standard level of service. The SSA for 2022/23 is £166.372m which is a 7.2% increase from the previous year (2021/22 £155.153m). The most significant service increase being personal social services at 12.2%.


The budget model has been drafted to include the adjustments with regard to the provisional settlement. Any adjustments required that arise in the final settlement will require consideration and appropriate incorporation into the budget.


The detailed assessment work carried out to identify the unavoidable cost pressures faced by Services has been finalised and identified a net total amount of £13.1m, which is summarised in Appendix 1 of the agenda papers. This amount is almost double the previous years and is £3.8m more than the increased sum available in the settlement and this would equate to the need to increase Council Tax by close to 8%, however some savings are available to the budget setting process.


The Rising costs of Care alone totals £7m, including:

-       UK £9.90 Real Living Wage and 1.25% Employers National Insurance – impacts on most if not all Care related Commissioned Services (results in provisional inflation factors of 8.87% for Domiciliary Care / Supported Living, 9.13% for Residential Care and 11.15% for Direct Payments);

-       Residential Homes – Fees setting review currently in progress;

-       Direct Payments;

-       Looked after Children; and;

-       Domiciliary Care.


The Leader also advised the Committee that the provision for pay inflation is a significant factor estimated at £3.4m and that there is no formal agreement yet on the main 2021/22 pay award. After taking into account the potential funding available, a balanced budget is achievable.


A Corporate approach has been taken to dealing with the Covid-19 net costs and losses, as opposed to each service having to incur sums attributable to relevant services. This approach has ensured that financial management of the 2021/22 budgets and business as usual activity remained strong. Total hardship costs and lost income are currently forecast  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.


Minutes of the previous meeting and any matters arising therefrom pdf icon PDF 273 KB


It was AGREED to confirm as a true record the Minutes of the Meeting held on

31 January 2022 and there were no matters arising therefrom.


The Chairman thanked Committee Members, Cabinet Members and Officers for attending and the meeting was terminated.