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Agenda item

Budget Options - Finance and Customer Services

Minutes:

The Chair welcomed the Strategic Director of Finance and Customer Services and the Cabinet Member for Corporate Services and Finance to the meeting.

 

Members considered the following budget proposals:

 

Title

OSMB Comments

Supported or Rejected

Additional Actions

Consolidate Riverside House Customer Services (FCS CIDS1)

No comments

Supported

N/A

To remove the cost of hiring a van for the Information Governance team to deliver historic paper records to staff across RMBC (FCS CIDS2)

No comments

Supported

N/A

To reduce the Information Governance Team by one member of staff (FCS CIDS3)

No comments

Supported

N/A

Restructure the Management team across the Digital Service (FCS CIDS4)

Members sought clarification as to why the proposal would deliver the anticipated benefits given the historic issues with IT in the authority. In response it was confirmed that the service would be in a stronger position as a result of the implementation of the proposal. Members sought further clarity in respect of the number of vacant posts and how long they had been vacant for. In response, it was confirmed that a large number had been held as vacant throughout the financial year. Members sought further information in respect of the reconfiguration of management in CIDS

 

Deferred

Strategic Director of Finance and Customer Services to provide clarification in respect of the proposal on 20 December 2017

Revenues & Benefits Service - reduction in overtime (FCS – Fin 1)

Members sought assurances in respect of the checks and balances in place to prevent the unnecessary payment of overtime. It was explained that former practices had been challenged and changes had been made to significantly reduce overtime since the appointment of the Strategic Director of Finance and Customer Services. Members also raised the need to move to e-billing for Council Tax. However, it was also suggested that the annual waste calendar be issued in the same letter as Council Tax bills to achieve efficiency on printing and postage

 

Supported

That OSMB consider establishing a task and finish group to review communications to residents

Recovery of Housing Benefit Overpayments (FCS – Fin 2)

 

No comment

Supported

N/A

Staffing savings from the Procure to Pay service (FCS – Fin 3)

Members received assurances that the progress for purchase orders was managed through an electronic system and noted the issues that had faced the service in the past two years

Supported

N/A

Review of Income Collection Arrangements (CW3)

No comment

Supported

N/A

 

Supporting documents: