Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Committee Rooms 1 & 2 - Deanes. View directions

Contact: Democratic Services Team 

Media

Items
No. Item

58/19

Apologies for absence and substitutions

Minutes:

Councillor Gardiner was replaced by Councillor D Putty.

 

The Vice-Chair Councillor Falconer chaired the meeting in the absence of the Chair Councillor Gardiner.

59/19

Declarations of interest

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

60/19

Urgent matters

To consider any items of business, other than those shown on this agenda and which, by reason of special circumstances to be stated at the meeting, in the opinion of the Chairman, should be considered at the meeting as a matter of urgency.

 

Minutes:

There were no urgent matters.

 

61/19

Minutes of the meeting held on 9 December 2019 pdf icon PDF 216 KB

The Chair will move that the minutes of the meeting be signed as a correct record. The only part of the minutes that can be discussed is their accuracy.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on the 9 December 2019 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

 

62/19

Recommendation Tracker pdf icon PDF 6 KB

To note the list of outstanding recommendations for the Committee.

Minutes:

The Chair confirmed that there were no outstanding items in the recommendation tracker.

 

Resolved: The Committee notes the recommendation tracker.

 

63/19

Property Investment Strategy - Annual Property Plan 2020-21 pdf icon PDF 311 KB

Contact Officer: Oliver Judges

This report sets out the proposed 2020/21 Annual Property Plan for the council’s property investment portfolio.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

This item was discussed as item 8.

 

The Executive Director of Finance and Resources introduced the report which set out the proposed 2020/21 Annual Property Plan for the council’s property investment portfolio.

 

The Committee discussed the report and made the following comments:

 

·         Would like to see more information included in the reports on the control processes, the required yields and KPIs in order to show whether the targets were on track to be met. Some members also raised the fact that they were unaware of the target yield figures for investments. The Executive Director confirmed that Internal Audit would be carrying out an audit on the Property Investment Strategy which would be included in the March audit plan update. The Executive Director also advised that the yield information could be recirculated to the Committee and that the Committees comments would be considered when evaluating how best to monitor and report the progress of the strategy, The KPI information would either be reported back to the Committee or through the Performance Panel.

 

·         Some members of the Committee expressed disappointment that there had been no investment in housing opportunities.

 

·         The Committee requested information on the costs incurred for the consultants which were employed to find potential residential investment opportunities.

 

Resolved: The Committee notes the report.

 

64/19

Summary Of Investment Income 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 110 KB

Contact Officer:  Sue Cuerden

The committee is recommended to note the summary position on investment income.

Minutes:

The Chair introduced the report which provided the Committee with a summary of investment income budgets for the year and the latest forecasts against those budgets as at 31 December 2019. 

 

Resolved: The Committee notes the report.

 

65/19

Investment Strategies 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 1 MB

Contact Officer: Dean Pletts

The purpose of this report is to present the draft Capital Investment Strategy 2020/21 and the draft Treasury Management Strategy 2020/21 that will be considered by Council on 27 February 2020.

 

Minutes:

The Head of Financial Services introduced the report which presented the Committee with the draft Capital Investment Strategy 2020/21 and the draft Treasury Management Strategy 2020/21 that would be considered by Council on 27 February 2020.

 

The Committee considered the report and raised the following points:

 

Capital Investment Strategy

 

·         Questioned in relation to table 6 of the report, why there was an estimated reduction in the treasury management fund. The Head of Financial Services explained that the short term money invested in treasury management would be used for capital expenditure such as facility grants or improvement of existing assets. The Executive Director of Finance and Resources advised that the treasury management fund held balances that had already been earmarked for council spend within the capital programme.

 

·         Queried why the Council would be investing £25M in Basing view over the next few years but only investing £4M into the Manydown housing development. The Head of Financial Services clarified that most of the expenditure in relation to Basing View would be for the new Eli Lilly building whereas, the Manydown investment would be for some of the short term financing for its day to day activities and that there would be separate funding arrangements for the housing element when the Manydown Development Company was formed.

 

·         Sought clarification in relation to the £90M non treasury investment decision. The Head of Financial Services confirmed that the decision was made 2 years ago under the Councils alternative investment strategy and was made up of £30M in the Property Investment Strategy, £35M as a provision for the Manydown development and £25M into the Invest to Grow fund.

 

·         Queried how much the County Council had allocated for the Manydown development. The Executive Director explained that as part of the agreement with the LLP and Development Company, both councils had the opportunity to loan funds for the working capital requirements. £4M had been allocated for this purpose of the original £35M. This would result in a higher return than normal short term investments. .

 

·         Made reference to the previously allocated £35M for Manydown. The Executive Director advised that the money had been allocated for future land purchases. This would now be funded under the joint venture agreement. The Executive Director also explained that in relation to loan agreements, the interest rate that had to be charged had to be mindful of state aid requirements and were therefore set at an appropriate level. It was also noted that these would still be beneficial rates to the development compared to other borrowing rates that would be available.

 

Investment Strategies

 

·         Queried why the Property Management team planned to carry out benchmarking exercises after all the investments were in place. The Executive Director advised that the investments were made in line with the principles agreed in the strategy and that all of the Councils assets would be reviewed and benchmarked against both recent acquisitions and national ones, looking at internal and external information.

 

Treasury Management

 

·         Questioned why the Treasury Management Liquidity  ...  view the full minutes text for item 65/19

66/19

Housing Benefits Subsidy Certification Report 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 233 KB

Contact Officer: Nadine McKenzie

The purpose of this report is to present the Housing Benefit Subsidy Certification Letter in respect of 2018/19.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Financial Services introduced the report which presented the Committee with the Housing Benefit Subsidy Certification Letter in respect of 2018/19.

 

Some members questioned whether the audit had highlighted any views on how to further support processes to help staff to eliminate the minor errors which had occurred. The Head of Financial Services explained that this had been reviewed and the small errors were unrelated and down to minor human error so an amended process could not be put in place.

 

The Committee noted that the report was the Councils best performance and thanked the team for their efforts and success.

 

Resolved: The Committee notes the report.

 

67/19

Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) Surveillance Activity and Viewing of Social Networking Sites pdf icon PDF 320 KB

Contact Officer: Jackie Tatam

This report advises the Committee that an application under the council’s non-RIPA process was made and approved and provides a summary of the viewing of individuals’ social networking sites in an investigatory capacity for the period 1 November to 31 December 2019.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor Harvey declared that as a ward councillor he had been directly involved in the matters related to the exempt papers.

 

The Chair introduced the report which advised the Committee that an application under the council’s non-RIPA process was made and approved and provided a summary of the viewing of individuals’ social networking sites in an investigatory capacity for the period 1 November to 31 December 2019.

 

The Committee thanked the officers for their professionalism when dealing with the matter.

 

Resolved: The Committee notes the report

 

68/19

General Data Protection Regulation - Notification of Data Breaches reported to the ICO pdf icon PDF 477 KB

Contact Officer: Jackie Tatam

This report informs the Committee that there have been no incidents which were considered to pose a risk to individuals and therefore there have been no reports to the ICO since the last report to the committee.

Minutes:

The Data Protection Officer introduced the report which informed the Committee that there had been no incidents which were considered to pose a risk to individuals and therefore there have been no reports to the ICO since the last report to the committee.

 

Resolved: The Committee notes the report.

 

69/19

Audit and Accounts work programme pdf icon PDF 90 KB

The Committee is asked to note and review it’s work programme.

Minutes:

The Chair advised that the Invest to grow update scheduled for March would be removed as the activity in the scheme had ceased.