The Committee is invited to consider the attached report and to make recommendations to Cabinet on the Special Expense Charge for 2022/2023.
The Assistant Director, Resources presented the report and reminded the Committee that one of its Terms of Reference was “to act as a consultative forum on the funding raised by, and utilisation of the King’s Lynn Special Expenses, and to offer input on priorities for this expenditure and of appropriate the level of funds to be raised”.
The Assistant Director, Resources drew the Committee’s attention to the Council Tax base for King’s Lynn for 2022/2023 which was estimated at 10,768 which was an increase of 108 from 2020/2021.
The Committee noted the main movements between the special expenses charge for 2021/2022 and 2022/2023, which related to:
· Footway lighting reduction;
· Play areas increase;
· Community Centres increase;
· Open spaces reduction;
· Closed churchyards, pavilions, dog bins, public conveniences increase; and
· Bus Shelters reduction.
That resulted in a total charge for Special Expenses of £534,120 against the tax base of £10,768 which worked out at a Band D charge of £49.60 for the next financial year, and an increase of £1.10 on the current change and a 2.27% percentage increase.
The Assistant Director, Resources drew the Committee’s attention to paragraph 2.4 of the report. She also advised of an amendment required to paragraph 4.2 of the report, where it should read This would reduce the increase from £1.10 per Band D equivalent to £1.06 (2.19% to 1.83%).
The Assistant Director, Resources advised that if special expenses exceeded the £5 council tax referendum limit (subject to confirmation) on increasing council tax, it might be necessary to make further amendments to comply with the legislation on council tax increases. This would be reported back accordingly.
In light of the proposal for the new bus shelter at South Lynn put forward by Councillor Kemp, it was noted that the costings and implications for Special Expenses had not been included within the report, therefore an amended report would be circulated to the Committee.
The Assistant Director, Resources then responded to questions from the Committee.
Councillor J Collop asked for information relating to the number of bus shelters, public conveniences and dog bins in King’s Lynn. The Assistant Director, Resources undertook to email the information to the Committee.
Councillor Kemp asked for further information regarding advertising on bus shelters, and asked how much could be achieved for each shelter per annum. The Assistant Director, Resources agreed to email this to the Committee. The Assistant Director, Community & Partnerships advised that if bus shelters were to take adverts then this needed to be incorporated into the design. If advertising were taking place, then this was subject to Business Rates.
The Chair thanked the Assistant Director, Finance for the report.
Please note that since the KLACC meeting new information has come to light. It appears that the Wisbech Road Bus Shelter is a smaller shelter than originally considered and in fact the total cost is now £4,350. If the Parish Partnership application is successful, then 50% would be payable by NCC and Cllr Kemp has agreed to fund the other 50% from her NCC Member allowance. That is £2175.
There would be no impact on Special Expenses as such, but Cabinet should note that BCKLWN would own the Bus Shelter and be responsible for ongoing maintenance.
RESOLVED: That the Committee endorsed the Special Expenses charge for 2022/2023 as set out in the report whilst noting the financial implications as set out in the report.