Agenda item


            The Director of Finance submitted for the Committee’s consideration a report on the development of the revenue estimates for 2023/24 and the next steps in the rate setting process. The report provided information on the current financial position, Departmental and additional growth proposals, medium-term financial planning and the financial strategy for the next two years. It also set out a number of recommendations for the Committee’s consideration, including the striking of the rate and the proposed cash limits for the Council’s Standing Committees. 




Moved by Councillor Long,

Seconded by Councillor Groogan and


      Resolved – That the Committee agrees that the kerbside glass expansion project be taken forward as a priority for the 2024/25 rate setting process and that officers begin the preparatory work to enable it to be introduced from 1st April, 2024.


            At the request of Councillor Spratt, the Committee agreed that a report be submitted to a future meeting outlining how the glass collection service trial reduced the use/volume of glass recycling in recycling centres and how any extra capacity could be used to provide an additional soft plastic recycling service, with the estimated cost to be included.




Moved by Councillor Long,

Seconded by Councillor McDonough-Brown (Chairperson),


      That the Committee agrees not to allocate funding of £500k to the Summer Diversionary Festival Programme in 2023/24 and to develop a new scheme for 2024/25 which would seek to build capacity at a local level.  


            On a recorded vote, five Members voted for the proposal and fifteen against and it was declared lost.


For 5


Against 15

Councillor McDonough-Brown (Chairperson);

The Deputy Lord Mayor (Councillor M. Kelly); and

Councillors Groogan, Long and McMullan.


Aldermen Dorrian and Haire; and

Councillors Beattie, Bradley, Bunting, Ferguson, Garrett, Heading, Lyons, McLaughlin, Murphy, Spratt, Thompson, Verner and Walsh.




Moved by Councillor McLaughlin,

Seconded by Councillor McDonough-Brown (Chairperson),


      That the Committee agrees to adopt the recommendations contained within the report.


            On a vote, eighteen Members voted for the proposal and one against, with one ‘no vote’ and it was declared carried.


            Accordingly, the Committee:


                               i.          approved an indicative domestic rate increase of 7.99% for 2023/24;


                             ii.          approved the proposed Financing Strategy to fund the 2023/24 budgetary gap in 2023/24 and 2024/25, as set out within the report;


                            iii.          noted the implications of this approach for the 2024/25 rate setting process;


                            iv.          approved the growth proposals included in the 2023/24 uncontrollable cost increase of £27.2m, as set out within the report;


                             v.          agreed to recommend the following cash limits for 2023/24:


a.     a cash limit of £50,355,486 for the Strategic Policy and Resources Committee for 2023/24, including £3,270,000 for Belfast Investment Fund and £3,000,000 for City Deal;


b.     a cash limit of £98,901,629 for the People and Communities Committee for 2023/24;


c.      a cash limit of £20,445,354 for the City Growth and Regeneration Committee for 2023/24;


d.     a cash limit of £1,624,167 for the Planning Committee for 2023/24; and


e.     a Capital Financing Budget of £22,274,022 for 2023/24 and


                      vi.      agreed that the aforementioned decisions would not be subject to call-in, as this would cause an unreasonable delay which would be prejudicial to the Council’s and the public’s interests in striking the rate by the legislative deadline of 15th February, 2023.


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