Decision details

Medium Term Financial Strategy 2023/24 - 2027/28

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Decision status: For Determination

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: Yes


In Councillor Mark Lowry’s absence, Councillor Chris Penberthy (Cabinet Member for Housing, Cooperative Development and Communities) introduced the item: 


a)    The document provided the strategic framework that linked the Council’s revenue budget, capital program, treasury management strategyand the capital strategy for the following 5 years; 

b)    The LGA, and would all recommend that each administration took such a plan to Council for approval, but the last one had been by the previous Labour administration in 2018; 

c)    The plan considered that the budget had already been set for 2023/24 and that the latter years were provided for illustrative purposes; 

d)    The strategy set out the financial principles and objectives, whilst working to deliver the priorities of the corporate plan; 

e)    The report showed a forecasted £11.2 million funding gap for 2024/25 that would need to be closed as part of the budget process, and over 5 years there was a £185 million gap; 

f)     Inflation, increase fuel costs and the cost of living crisis were impacting the council as well as additional pressures in adult social care, children’s social care and support for the homeless; 

g)    It was unknown what action Government would take to deliver reform to local government funding as there had been a change in the majority of funding no longer coming from Government, but instead from local taxation; 

h)    The budget included an additional £2.6 million to , as well as £1.5 of one-off allocations used to balance the 2023/24 budget which needed to be covered; 

i)     There was a need to find new ways to provide services, to work with partners wherever possible, to do things more efficiently, to make the most of the Council’s assets, focus and clarity on organisational purpose to reform the Children’s directorate; 

j)     The Place directorate would continue to prioritise growth to ensure the  

k)    The People directorate would continue to work on reducing demand for homelessness services through early intervention and prevention as well as improvements in access to health care and improvement of outcomes for those leaving hospital; 

l)     Transformation and Customer Support Services would continue to play a key role in supporting demand-led services, with finance, legal, procurement and HR all due to review their own operating models; 

m)  The plan containeda very clear ambition in the capital program to invest in and transform the city and thanked Councillor Lowry for his work on the plan. 


David Northey (Interim Section 151 Officer) added: 


n)    He had made a commitment to create a medium-term financial plan at Audit and Governance Committee, and it had been a recommendation from the last budget scrutiny meetings; 

o)    The figures and information would change as the years progressed. 


In response to it was explained: 

p)    The plan should be reviewed in the mid-term of the following financial year as it would inform and update the plan; 

q)    The council were trying to deliver the same services with less funding from Government, which is what was primarily causing increases in council and this was being picked up by national media, and similar issues were being experienced across the country; 

r)    David Northey would be attending a DLUHC meeting later that week where they wanted to understand more about what was ‘happening on the ground’ and the team always took the opportunity to get local issues across; 

s)     There was a national conversation to be had about how much funding local government got to provide children’s social care services, as it had become a big issue that could no longer be solved locally; 

t)     SIGOMA had the distribution of funding should return to being done based on levels of deprivation, something the conservative government ceased in 2010, which had robbed local authorities of money they were using to try and eliminate poverty or to deal with the consequences of deprivation. 

The Cabinet agreed to recommend the Financial Strategy 2023/24 – 2027/28 to City Council for approval. 


Publication date: 12/09/2023

Date of decision: 11/09/2023

Decided at meeting: 11/09/2023 - Cabinet

Effective from: 19/09/2023

Accompanying Documents: