Agenda and minutes

Healthier Communities Overview and Scrutiny Committee - Thursday, 8th February, 2024 9.30 am

Venue: Hybrid - Neuadd Cyngor Ceredigion, Penmorfa, Aberaeron / remotely via video conference

Contact: Dwynwen Jones 

No. Item




Lowri Edwards, Corporate Lead Officer apologised for her inability to attend the meeting due to being on other Council duties.



Disclosures of personal interest (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.





Report on the draft 24/25 Budget pdf icon PDF 3 MB


Councillor Caryl Roberts, Committee Chair, outlined the meeting procedure and welcomed the Leader of the Council, Councillor Bryan Davies, Councillor Gareth Davies, Cabinet Member for Finance and Procurement Services, Committee Members, the remaining Cabinet Members, non-Committee Members and Officers to the meeting.


The Leader of the Council, Councillor Bryan Davies, presented the report on the draft budget for 2024/2025. The Leader stated that this was an extraordinarily difficult financial situation faced by the Council with considerable financial pressures. He stated that during his time as a Councillor he has never known such a challenging financial situation as Ceredigion only received a 2.6% increase in the draft 24/25 settlement from Welsh Government.  He advised Committee Members that he has met with some Town and Community Councils to discuss the financial situation and has more meetings scheduled this coming week.


The Cabinet Member for Finance and Procurement, Councillor Gareth Davies, presented the remaining information in the report. Councillor Davies also stated that this is by far the worst financial situation he has faced as Councillor in setting the budget.


It was advised that areas from Enclosure A of the agenda papers that this committee may wish to give consideration were as follows:


a) Section 3 - The 24/25 WG Provisional Settlement outcome for Ceredigion.

b) Section 4 – High level Budget Considerations including:

Section 4b) - Total level of Revenue Budget Cost Pressures.

Section 4d) - Total level of Revenue Budget Reduction proposals.

Section 4f) - Cabinet’s proposal on Council Tax Premiums

Section 4g) - Potential Council Tax position

c) Section 5 – Draft Budget Requirement

d) Section 6 – Budget Risks

e) Section 7 – proposed Multi-Year Capital Programme

f) Section 8 – Financial resilience (including Reserves & General Balances)

g) Section 9 – Medium Term Financial outlook

h) The 11 Recommendations agreed by Cabinet on 23/01/24.

i) Any other Budget matter that the Committee deems appropriate.


Welsh Government (WG) have openly stated that their 24/25 Draft Budget is ‘the starkest and most painful since devolution’. Ceredigion has only received a 2.6% funding increase (14th out of 22 Local Authorities), this also equates to Ceredigion receiving the lowest increase per head of population across all of Wales. It is therefore also Ceredigion County Council’s starkest Budget yet which is worse than was previously forecasted and less than the 3.1% referenced by Welsh Government in the Autumn.


The headline from the Provisional Local Government Finance Settlement in England was a 6.5% overall uplift in funding with £1bn in additional grant funding for Social Care compared to 23/24. Being a devolved administration Welsh Government are free to use their funding as they see fit. Consequently, there are several different policy decisions that exist in Wales as compared to England.


The Provisional Local Government Finance Settlement outcome, combined with various individual Specific grants being cut, as well as highly significant Cost pressures on Services that show no signs of abating, means it is no longer possible to continue to protect Services.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 15.


To confirm minutes of the previous meeting and to consider any matters arising from those Minutes pdf icon PDF 117 KB


It was AGREED to confirm the minutes of the 22nd of November 2023 Committee meeting as a true record. There were no matters arising from those minutes.


Any other matter which the Chairman decided is for urgent attention of the Committee

There were no other matters raised.