Agenda and minutes

Shared Revenues Partnership Joint Committee
Wednesday 3rd September 2014 4.00 pm

Venue: Orwell Room, Grafton House

Contact: Trisha Sutton  01473 432512

Items
No. Item

14.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillor S Barratt.

15.

Unconfirmed Minutes of the meeting held on 18 June 2014 pdf icon PDF 45 KB

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

that the minutes of the meeting held on 18 June 2014 be signed as a true record.

16.

Dates and Times of Meetings - all at 4.00pm

Wednesday 5 November 2014

Wednesday 21 January 2015

Wednesday 11 March 2015

Minutes:

The dates and times of the meetings were confirmed.

17.

To Confirm or Vary the Order of Business

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

that the Order of Business be confirmed as printed on the agenda.

18.

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

19.

SRP/14/05 Head of Shared Revenues Partnership report pdf icon PDF 95 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

19.1    The Head of Shared Services reported that the processing of new benefit claims across all three authorities had stabilised, with 24 at Babergh District Council, 22 at Ipswich Borough Council and 21 at Mid Suffolk District Council and the figures were available for comparison with 2013/14.  The changes of circumstance figures had also stabilised at 5 at Babergh District Council and 7 at Ipswich Borough Council and efforts were being made to reduce the time taken to process changes to circumstances at Mid Suffolk District Council.

 

19.2    Discussion took place about the Real Time Information (RTI) – Bulk Data Matching Initiative taking place against data held on six social security benefits to identify cases where claimants had either failed to declare or had under declared earnings or non-state pension for Housing Benefit purposes.  Four local authorities would be piloting the initiative, from the 18 September 2014 to the end of the financial year and the implementation date would now be 6 October 2015.  It was unknown at this point in time whether the New Burden Grant of £15.13 per referral (in relation to resource implications) would be adequate.  

 

19.3    The Operations Manager, Finance and Procurement presented the operational account and explained that the employees underspend was largely due to the delay of the pay increase payment and the current vacancies.  Discussion took place about the increasing current favourable variance and it was confirmed that the Transformation Programme might identify enhancements to the service which could require additional spend.  The predicted growth in housing and business rates could also require additional resource and it was confirmed that the Shared Revenues Agreement allowed for a contingency of 10% of the budget.  It was for the discretion of members of the Committee to agree the budget and the Head of Service would present the projected budget for 2015/16 to members at the November meeting.

 

19.4    In response to members questions the Head of Service confirmed that although the on line registration guided residents fully through to completion, the information then needed to be manually input into the Northgate system.  There might be an option to input this information within the system without manual intervention and this would be debated during the consideration of the Transformation Programme.  The Shared Revenues Partnership, Operations Manager also agreed to include details about the % of write offs due to bankruptcies and liquidations, within the Revenues Update report to the November meeting.

 

            Action: The Shared Revenues Partnership, Operations Manager to include details about the % of write offs within the Revenues Update report to the November meeting.

 

 

 

19.5    On the 27 February 2014 and 24 June 2014, Mid Suffolk District Council and Babergh District Council respectively agreed at Council that debt write-off delegations would be authorised by the Shared Revenues Partnership Officer’s in line with limits determined by the Committee.   Therefore, it was proposed that the Committee approve the level of delegation for write offs for business rates, council tax and housing benefit overpayments, for Mid Suffolk  ...  view the full minutes text for item 19.

20.

SRP/14/06 Welfare Reform Update pdf icon PDF 98 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

20.1    The Head of Shared Service presented this report and reported that the cases affected by the removal of the spare room subsidy had remained constant since April 2014.  The Central Government Housing statistics requested at the last SRP meeting would be provided to the Committee when the 2013/14 data had been published.  An update on a recent Judicial Review would be provided for information within the Welfare Reform report to the next meeting.  

 

20.2    Landlord forums would be held at Mid Suffolk District Council during October 2014 and the Shared Revenues Partnership and the Anglia Revenues Partnership would also hold an annual landlord forum at Mid Suffolk District Council during March 2015.

 

20.3    The Officer confirmed that Discretionary Housing Payments (DHP) were dealt with by treating the account of those in receipt of a Disability Living Allowance as income and after any additional costs had been considered then a decision whether to pay a DHP was made.  It was also confirmed that all Housing Benefit Payments made were paid direct into bank accounts, with the frequency being individual to each customer.  DHP’s could not be refused if the criteria was met and promotion of the availability continued.

 

Resolved:

 

that the report be noted.

21.

SRP/14/07 Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 43 KB

Minutes:

21.1    Minute 10.2 – SRP/14/03 Forward Plan

 

            Details of how the workload had change over time, the priorities, targets and savings for the year which could be identified and an update on the Transformation Programme would be included in the performance report at the next meeting.

 

Resolved:

 

that the Forward Plan, with the inclusion requested above,  be noted.

22.

Exclusion of Public

To exclude the public (including the Press) from the meeting during consideration of the following items under Regulation 21 of the Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Access to Information) (England) Regulation 2000 as it is likely that if members of the public were present during this item there would be disclosure to them of exempt information falling within paragraphs 1, 4 & 5 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended).

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

that the public (including the Press) be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following items under Regulation 21 of the Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Access to Information) (England) Regulation 2000 as it is likely that if members of the public were present during these items there would be disclosure to them of exempt information falling within paragraphs 1, 4 & 5 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended).

23.

Unconfirmed Exempt Minutes of the Meeting held on 18 June 2014

24.

SRP/14/08 Revenues Update NFP