{meta} Agenda for Lead Member for Finance and Support Services Briefing on Tuesday, 17 January 2023, 2.00 pm

Agenda and decisions

Venue: Salford Suite, Salford Civic Centre, Chorley Road, Swinton. View directions

Contact: Claire Edwards 

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for absence.

2.

Declarations of interest.

3.

Items for Decision (Part 1 - Open to the Public):

3a

Council Tax - Calculation of Tax Base for Tax Setting Purposes 2023/24. pdf icon PDF 259 KB

Decision:

Salford City Council - Record of Decision

 

I, Councillor Jack Youd, Lead member for Finance and Support Services, in exercise of the powers contained within the City Council constitution, do hereby:

 

Approve, in accordance with the Local Authorities (Calculation of Council Tax Base) (England) Regulations 2012, the amount 73,859 calculated by Salford City Council as its council tax base for the financial year 2023/24.

 

The reason is: that the council is required to calculate the council tax base for 2023/24. This "base" figure, expressed as the number of band D equivalent properties in the city, is, for council tax purposes, a fundamental element in the tax-setting process.

 

Options considered and rejected were: other estimates to reflect changes in the next financial year.

 

Assessment of Risk: The Tax Base figure is fundamental to the setting of the council tax levy and hence to the whole budget process. Setting a tax base that is too low would prevent the council from drawing the full amount of tax collected from the collection fund in 2023/24, while setting a tax base that is too high would create a deficit in the collection fund. However, in normal years the exercise is regarded as low risk because: -

·         the starting figures are provided by the Valuation Office and a year-on-year comparison of figures is undertaken by the DLUHC and attention drawn to possible anomalies (if any);

·         the method of calculation is well-established and familiar, and figures are checked for "reasonableness" and their fit with expectations. While an element of judgement needs to be made on future anticipated dwelling changes, these are based on research and information from other council sources.

 

The source of funding is: n/a

 

Legal Advice obtained:Nicky Smith, Senior Solicitor

The Local Authorities (Calculation of Council Tax base) (England) Regulations 2012 set out the rules for calculation of the Council Tax base, which is an amount required to be used in the calculation of Council Tax by billing authorities and major precepting authorities and in the calculation of the amount of a precept payable by each billing authority to a major precepting authority. Under the rules, the council tax base is, in essence, the number of dwellings in an area belonging to each valuation band, modified to take account of the proportion applying to dwellings in each band, discounts, reductions under a Council Tax reductions scheme and the proportion of the Council Tax for the year which the billing authority expects to be able to collect.

 

Financial Advice obtained: the report is produced by the corporate accountancy team.

 

Procurement Advice obtained: n/a

 

The following documents have been used to assist the decision process:

·         Local Government Finance Act 1992

·         The Local Authorities (Calculation of Council Tax Base) (England) Regulations 2012

·         LGA Finance circulars.

·         Various Working Papers in Corporate Services, Finance Division.

 

Contact Officer: David Eden            Tel No. 793 3228

 

This decision is not subject to consideration by another Lead Member.

 

The appropriate scrutiny panel to call-in the decision is the Overview  ...  view the full decision text for item 3a

3b

Business Rates - Collection Fund Estimated Fund Balance Calculation 31 March 2023. pdf icon PDF 189 KB

Decision:

Salford City Council - Record of Decision

 

I, Councillor Jack Youd, Lead member for Finance and Support Services, in exercise of the powers contained within the City Council constitution, do hereby:

 

Note the £6.424m third (and final) year allocation of the phased 2020/21 estimated deficit to preceptors’ general funds in 2023/24.

 

Approve that a £2.035m surplus be declared as the estimated Collection Fund balance as at 31st March 2023 in respect of the business rates retention scheme.

 

Grant delegated approval to the Chief Finance Officer to approve the business rates estimate for 2023/24 and to notify the respective amounts to be distributed to the council and the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) (in relation to its fire and rescue functions).

 

The Reasons are: that the Non-Domestic Rating (Rates Retention) regulations 2013 provide for the operation of the rates retention system through the council’s Collection Fund. They require a local authority to estimate the balance on its Collection Fund for the scheme as at 31st March each year and to notify the government and each relevant precepting authority of the amounts that have been calculated by 31st January in the preceding year. As part of the 100% rates retention pilot any balance is to be distributed to/borne by the council and GMCA (fire element) in the following year based on the prescribed share for each.

 

Options considered and rejected were: n/a the calculation is a statutory requirement.

 

Assessment of Risk: Medium – it is the tenth year of the BRRS and sixth of the 100% rates retention pilot. The potential cost of outstanding appeals is still an extremely volatile area and could continue to have a substantial impact on the ultimate balance. However, some detailed historical evidence has been gathered which does provide some reassurance as to the accuracy of certain assumptions made in the estimate. The Collection Fund will continue to be closely monitored during the year and will be reviewed at outturn 2022/23. The difference between the actual surplus or deficit at that stage will be factored into future estimated balance calculations.

 

The source of funding is: a £2.035m surplus declared as the fund balance means that distributions will be made to the council’s General Fund and GMCA (fire) in 2023/24.

 

Legal Advice obtained:Nicky Smith, Senior Solicitor

The Local Government Finance Act 1988 (as amended by the Local Government Finance Act 2012) provides for the operation of the non-domestic rates retention system through the Council's Collection Fund.  In that regard, the Non-Domestic Rating (Rates Retention) Regulations 2013 provide for the calculation of the surplus or deficit. The amount is to be estimated by 31st January in the preceding year and is to be apportioned in accordance with the provisions of the relevant legislation and, in the Council's case, the 100% non-domestic rates retention pilot.

 

As explained in the main body of the report, the Local Authorities (Collection Fund: Surplus and Deficits) (Coronavirus) (England) Regulations 2020 implemented an announcement by the Secretary of State  ...  view the full decision text for item 3b

4.

Exclusion of the Public.

5.

Items for Decision (Part 2 - Closed to the Public):

No items.