Agenda item

Capital Programme Update - Quarter 3 Report 2022-23


The Chief Officer – Finance, Performance and Change presented a report, which provided Members with an update in relation to to the capital position at the end of Quarter 3 in the current financial year.


She advised, that the Council's Capital Strategy was approved by Council on the 23 February 2022. The approved capital budget approved by Council in February totalled £69.979 million. The programme was last updated and approved by Council in October last year.


Section 4 of the report outlined the current position on the Council’s capital programme in this year. The revised programme for the year totalled £61.7m with £28.2m being funded by BCBC resources and the balance of £33.5m being funded from external sources.  A breakdown of the programme across services was shown in Table 1 in the report, with more detail regarding the funding of the programme being shown in Table 2.


Details regarding individual schemes were shown in Appendix A of the report.


The Chief Officer – Finance, Performance and Change stated that Members will see that the total requested slippage at Quarter 3 is £28.5m. The reasons for the slippage was detailed at paragraph 4.4 of the report.


As well as adjustments for slippage the report also detailed some new and amended schemes for approval which included Welsh Government funding  received to fund a number of schemes including the:


o          Transforming Towns Placemaking grant to address the decline in     town centres and the reduced demand for High Street retail;

o          Housing with care funding to support the development of the children’s residential hub;

o          ULEV Transformation Fund monies to support the delivery of electric vehicle charging infrastructure within public car parks ; and

o          Access Improvement Fund Grant to support work to improve access to and on the public rights of way network.


In addition to the Welsh Government grants, funding had also been identified to fund other initiatives, to include;


           Additional as S106 contributions to support the provision of affordable housing schemes;

           Additional funding from the Cardiff Capital region local transport fund to support the Porthcawl bus station project;

           Funding to support the Porthcawl Welsh medium seedling school scheme design;

           Funding from Sport Wales to improve external facilities at Ysgol Bryn Castell for use by the schools and the community;

           Public crossing work at Kenfig Hill; and

           Additional funding for ICT equipment purchases for schools


There were also changes to two schemes detailed in the report, with the full revised programme being shown at Appendix B.


The Chief Officer – Finance, Performance and Change confirmed that when Council approved the Capital Strategy for this year, it included prudential indicators for 2022-23 to 2024-25. Appendix C to the report, reflected that the Council is operating within the approved local authority limits.


The Cabinet Member – Resources commended the report.


A Member asked for some clarification around the Llynfi Valley Development Loan, in that a loan suggest some monies have to be paid back, which he did not think was fully the case.


The Corporate Director – Communities confirmed that though it was called a loan, part of this was in fact non-repayable.


A Member welcomed the added funding streams for Porthcawl Bus station (£404k) and the Children’s Residential Hub (608k).


A Member enquired what the Highway Schemes represented in terms of Band B schools and also asked when the electrical vehicle charging devices would be operational in Bridgend car parks.


The Corporate Director – Education and Family Support, confirmed that funding from Welsh Government was committed in terms of Intervention Rates of 75% for special schools and 65% for ‘other’ schools. However, added funding had to be found by the local authority for infrastructure works around schools in order to achieve adequate and safe access to them. This was a significant amount he added, bearing in mind the number of schools in the County Borough as well as those intended as proposed, ie new build.


The Corporate Director – Communities added that all public car parks would have a facility to charge electronic vehicles post 2025, and the Council were currently waiting for Western Power to power some charging points by end February/March. When these were up and running, a communication would go out to this effect for the benefit of the public.


A Member referred to page 41 and Appendix A of the report with regards to funding queries relating to Pencoed Primary School.


The Corporate Director – Education and Family Support advised that he would speak to the local Member regarding these, outside of the meeting.


A Member stated that slippage of projects contained in the Capital programme was a growing concern and he asked, if the Authority should possibly consider grouping all Capital Scheme projects under a single Capital Working group. He also noted that within the Capital Programme there were schemes aligned to different Directorates etc, but he wondered if consideration should be given to capital expenditure to generate revenue, being included under a type of ‘Spend to Scheme’ proposal.


The Chief Executive on the latter point advised that this could be investigated to see if there would be any demonstrable benefits from such a proposal. He added that it would for example, be beneficial to look to make revenue savings in energy schemes, in order to counteract rising utility costs.


The Corporate Director – Communities advised that there were a number of genuine reasons why some schemes were subject to slippage and therefore delayed. These included requirements to re-survey sites, market conditions whereby prices for materials etc had increased and charging scheme options, amongst others.


A Member asked if there was any intention for Council buildings such as for example, the main Civic Offices, to be further occupied by staff now that the Covid 19 had been controlled to a manageable degree.


The Chief Executive confirmed that agile working that accounted for staff either working remotely at home or in the office (but mostly remotely) would in all intents and purposes remain, as this had proven to be an effective way of working. This was supported by a Hybrid Working Policy that had been put in place within BCBC. Also, agile working followed the guidance given to large organisations such as local authorities from Welsh Government, in a bid to reduce carbon emissions under the Net Zero carbon agenda. 


RESOLVED:                                 That Council:


  1.  Noted the Council’s Capital Programme 2022-23 Quarter 3 update to

            31 December 2022 (Appendix A to the report referred)

  1.  Approved the revised Capital Programme (Appendix B)
  2.  Noted the projected Prudential and Other Indicators for 2022-23

            (Appendix C).

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