Agenda and minutes

Online Meeting, Group Leaders Meeting with Trade Union Representatives - Tuesday 2 February 2021 4.00 pm

Venue: Online Meeting

Contact: Stuart Figini  01225 718221 Email:


Note No. Item



Welcome and Introductions


The Deputy Leader welcomed everyone to the meeting and asked attendees to introduce themselves.





Apologies were received from:


·       Cllr Philip Whitehead – Leader of the Council

·       Cllr Ian Thorn, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group

·       Alan Tomala – Unite representative


Notes from the previous meeting

To receive the minutes from the last meeting held on 5 February 2020.

Supporting documents:


The notes of the previous meeting held on 5 February 2020 were received and noted as a correct record.



Wiltshire Council Financial Plan Update 2021/22

To consider the 2021/22 budget proposals available here.  


Trade Union representatives can join this meeting via their outlook invite, or contact .


Cllr Pauline Church, Cabinet member for Finance, Procurement and Commercial Investment provided an overview of the Council’s proposed budget for 2021/22.


Cllr Church reported that the process undertaken to consult on the Budget was open and transparent.  She confirmed the budget timetable and confirmed that the budget papers had been discussed in detail with members at their briefing on 20 January 2021, the Financial Planning Task Group on 20 January 2021 and the Overview and Scrutiny Management Committee on 26 January 2021, Cabinet earlier in the day prior to this meeting and ultimately Council at the end of February 2021.


In presenting the overview, Cllr Church indicated that despite it being an extraordinary year dealing with and responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Councils financial management and spending controls together with emergency funding from Government has seen a forecast balanced budget by the end of the 2020/21 financial year, placing the Council in a strong position going into 2021/22.  The 2021/22 budget will ensure that vital services to the residents, businesses and communities of Wiltshire are continued to be provided during the pandemic and the recovery that will follow.


Cllr Church commented further on (i) the quarter 3 forecast position; (ii) the Local Government Provisional Settlement on 17 December 2020; (iii) Council tax; (iv) Business rates; (v) proposals to reduce the budget gap; (vi) significant service investment – Adult Social Care, Children’s Services, Waste Services and Leisure; (vii) the Capital Programme for 21/22; and (viii) the proposals considered by Cabinet on 2 February 2020.


The union representatives then had an opportunity to make statements and ask questions regarding the Budget.


Mr John Drake (UNISON) asked about the representations being made to government in relation to future pay awards. Cllr Church and the Director of HR & OD reported that the Council is working alongside the South West Councils on this and provided assurances that representations on the matter were taking place.


Mr John Hawkins (ATL) highlighted concerns about the Dedicated Schools Grant and High Needs spending. Cllr Church and the Interim Corporate Director of Resources (S151 Officer) confirmed that the Council continues to make representations to MP’s for additional funding in this area, however, it was a challenge that all local authorities have to manage.


The Deputy Leader thanked those for attendance for offering their views and questions