Flintshire County Council’s Cabinet Members will be asked to note a report on the final outturn position for its revenue budget for the 2019/20 financial year when they meet on 16 June.
Despite current challenges and continued economic pressures, we have achieved a balanced budget and are on track to submit the formal Statement of Accounts and supporting notes to Audit Wales in line with the statutory deadline of 15 June.
The Accounts will be subject to audit over the summer and the final audited accounts presented to Audit Committee in September for formal approval.
The final year end position was as follows:
Council Fund - An operating surplus of £0.439m (£1.524m deficit at Month 11) resulting in a Contingency Reserve balance as at 31 March 2020 of £2.370m.
Housing Revenue Account (HRA) - Net in year expenditure was £0.686m lower than budget resulting in a closing un-earmarked balance as at 31 March 2020 of £2.008m.
The Final Outturn position is a significant positive movement of £1.963m from Month 11 which is due to a number of different factors.
Specific areas have been under tactical review to further reduce the previously projected overspend position such as the final outcome of the Single Person Discount Scheme and the ongoing review of the complex Central Loans and Investment Account.
Measures were also introduced to review and challenge non-essential spend and recruitment to vacancies with the aim of reducing in-year expenditure to ‘dampen’ the projected overspend at that time. This work made a positive impact on the outturn position.
In addition, as in previous years there were some late awards of grant from Welsh Government, the Health Board and other third parties all of which had a positive impact on the Council’s financial position as at the end of 2019/20.
The improvement in the financial position as at the end of March 2020 is welcome at a time when we need to change the focus to dealing with the new financial year and the significant challenges that we are facing.