Agenda and minutes

Quarterly Reports, Performance Scrutiny Committee - Thursday, 18th February 2021 6.00 pm

Venue: Virtual Meeting

Contact: Democratic Services - 01522 873387 

No. Item


Confirmation of Minutes - 21 January 2021 pdf icon PDF 163 KB


RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 21 January 2021 be confirmed.


Declarations of Interest

Please note that, in accordance with the Members' Code of Conduct, when declaring interests members must disclose the existence and nature of the interest, and whether it is a disclosable pecuniary interest (DPI) or personal and/or pecuniary.


Councillor Pat Vaughan declared a Personal Interest with regard to the agenda item titled 'Financial Performance - Quarterly Monitoring'. Reason: His granddaughter worked in the Finance Section of the City of Lincoln Council.



Portfolio Holder under Scrutiny - Reducing Inequality pdf icon PDF 159 KB

Additional documents:


Councillor Rosie Kirk, Portfolio Holder for Reducing Inequality:


a)    presented a report to Performance Scrutiny Committee covering the following key points:


-       Development and launch of a brand-new befriending service to provide direct support to vulnerable and isolated residents during the COVID-19 pandemic.


-       Launch and delivery of a Community Support Helpline to assist those most in need during the pandemic to access vital supplies.


-       Over £100k had been raised by Lincoln Community Lottery for good causes since its launch in August 2018.


-       Continued success of the Lincoln Social Responsibility Charter, which had seen local businesses encouraged to go above and beyond to support their employees and the local community during this difficult time.


-       Under the governments ‘Everyone In’ initiative the council successfully offered a place of safety to every person sleeping rough, or at risk of sleeping rough, during the pandemic.


-       267 successful awards of £500 had been made under the National Test and Trace Payments Scheme (as of 21 January 2021).


-       The Business Rates Team had been instrumental in supporting businesses in 2020/21, awarding £27million in Expanded Retail Discount.


-       The council had been successful in securing in excess of £1million to provide 15 units of accommodation with support for the rough sleeping cohort.


-       In 2020 a PSPO was brought in covering Lucy Tower Street, Broadgate and Central Multi-story Car Parks with the aim of further reducing ASB in these areas and enhancing the public image and safety of our city.


b)    explained the key achievements over the past year for the following areas/services:


-       Befriending Service

-       Community Helpline

-       Food Vouchers for Vulnerable Families in the School Holidays

-       COVID-19 Crisis Fund

-       Lincoln Community Lottery

-       Lincoln Social Responsibility Charter

-       Universal Credit and Welfare Reform

-       Test and Trace Payment Scheme and Winter Grants Scheme

-       Welfare and Benefits Advice

-       Housing Benefit/Council Tax Support

-       Discretionary Rate Relief Policy

-       Financial Inclusion

-       Skills and Training (including Adult Learning and The Network)

-       Asylum Seekers and Refugees

-       Homelessness and Rough Sleeping

-       Equality and Diversity

-       Public Protection and Anti-Social Behaviour (PPASB Team)

-       Intervention Team

-       City Centre Issues and Partner Collaboration

-       Safer Lincolnshire Partnership

-       Protecting Vulnerable People

-       Response to COVID-19

-       CCTV Service

-       World Hello Day

-       Holocaust Memorial Day


c)    invited members’ comments and questions.


Question: Members asked if what had already been achieved and what more could possibly be achieved within the remit of the portfolio could be looked into in readiness for the next member to take over the portfolio?


Response: Cllr R Kirk was hopeful to meet with the new Portfolio Holder once this had been agreed and carry out a handover.


Question: Members asked how much money was given to Bridge Church and what areas this money was to be used for?


Response: £10,000 was put forward in October to help families that were struggling. Not all this money was initially used and was carried  ...  view the full minutes text for item 46.


Financial Performance - Quarterly Monitoring pdf icon PDF 1021 KB


Jaclyn Gibson, Chief Finance Officer:


a)    presented a report to Performance Scrutiny Committee on the third quarter’s performance (up to 31 December 2020)


b)    provided information on the Council’s:


·         General Fund Revenue Account –The General Fund Summary was currently projecting a forecast underspend of £122,723 (as shown in Appendix A), resulting in general balance at the year-end of £2,645,911 (subject to any final contributions to earmarked reserves). There were a significant number of forecast year-end variations in income and expenditure against the approved budget, primarily as a result of Covid-19 along with variances arising from measures taken to address the budget pressures and the financial support provided by Government, Full details of the main variances were provided in Appendix B.


The most significant impact of Covid-19 had been on the Council’s income streams with monthly income levels plummeting across a range of discretionary services as well as through investments and rental streams, as a result of the shutdown of the economy and its likely phased path to recovery. The most significant of income losses had been:

-       Car Parking

-       Development Management, Land Charges and Building Control

-       Leisure, Recreation and Tourism

-       Christmas Market

-       Commercial Rents

-       Treasury Management

-       Court Cost Charges

-       Other Income Areas


·         Housing Revenue Account – the HRA was projecting an in-year variance of a £772,391 underspend, which would increase the general balances to £1,693,462 at the end of 2020/21. Although the forecast position was an underspend there were a number of forecast year-end variations in income and expenditure as a result of Covid19 along with variances arising from measures taken to address the budget pressures. Full details of the main variances were provided in Appendix D.


Significant pressures facing the HRA related to its income streams, primarily its housing rent income, as follows:


-       Housing Rents

-       Housing Voids

-       Treasury Management

-       Court Cost Charges


·         Housing Repairs Service – the HRS was forecasting a surplus of £204,670 in 2020/21. Appendix E provided a forecast summary, with full details of the main variances provided in Appendix F.


c)    provided information on:


·         General Investment Programme – the original General Investment Programme for 2020/21 in the MTFS 2020-25 amounted to £15.6m. This was increased to £16.4m following quarter 4 approvals and year end re-profiles from 2019/20. At quarter 2 the programme was reduced to £11,1m and at quarter 3 the programme had been reduced by a further £5,987m to £5,117m as shown at paragraph 7.2.


The overall spending on the General Investment Programme for the first three quarters of 2020/21 was £0.885m, which was 17.5% of the 2020/21 programme and 17% of the active programme. This was detailed further at Appendix J.


·         Housing Investment Programme – the original Housing Investment Programme for 2020/21 in the MTFS 2020-25 amounted to £25.640m. This was increased to £28.505m following approvals and year end re-profiles as part of the 2019/20 outturn. As at quarter 2 the budget was revised to £22.3m and had been further adjusted by £2.6m  ...  view the full minutes text for item 47.


Service Delivery During our COVID-19 Response pdf icon PDF 214 KB

Additional documents:


Heather Grover, Principal Policy Officer:


a)    presented Performance Scrutiny Committee with a summary of how services had performed during the pandemic with a focus on quarter three, as well as an indication of plans for future operation.


b)    advised that the report was split into the following sections:


-       Temporary New Services

-       Temporarily Closed Services

-       Temporarily Limited Services

-       Fully Operational Services

-       Temporarily Enhanced Services

-       Looking Forward – Our Targets for Next Year


c)    invited members’ comments and questions.


Comment: Members commented that the report was fantastically written and proved how important Local Government was in peoples lives. The report painted a picture of how staff operated within the Council and members asked for the document to be circulated to all members.


Comment: Members were impressed on how Covid secure City Hall was and wanted to give particular thanks to the IT Team for their help.




1.    The report be circulated to all Elected Members.


2.    The report be noted and referred to Executive.


Feedback from Budget Review Group pdf icon PDF 179 KB


Resolved that the minutes from Budget Review Group held on 3 February 2021 be noted.