Report to Follow.
Michael Pilcher introduced the report and highlighted the following points.
· This is an updated version of the report members received at the last meeting. BCC is required to publish accounts by the end of the month, so this report will be published tomorrow (Friday 28 August). There will then be a 30 day public inspection period, where the public can get access to papers (assuming they are not exempt due to personal data or commercial sensitivity).
· The accounts are not for Audit Committee approval, as they will need to be externally audited first.
· A few key changes: there is a narrative report summary overview of the year. A final evaluation of Bristol Holding Company. Completion of expenditure and funding analysis and how it relates to the outturn cabinet report. The company accounts are draft, the final figures will be incorporated into the final accounts. Additional QA and statements on exit packages. Some minor formatting will be needed before publishing.
· On p.13 of the report bottom left it says 15.9% waste to landfill for 19/20, then kg waste per household in previous years. This is not comparing like for like and it should be % or kg in all cases.
· Key housing does not seem to have 19/20 figures. Some data may not be available, there is a time lag in some areas of financial reporting. The report uses the latest information available at the time. There have also been Covid-19 related delays.
ACTION MP add explanatory note on the availability of data where relevant.
· There was a discussion on business rates retained by BCC and returned to Government in light of the 100% retention scheme. The Government operates a top-up tariff system. As Bristol’s business rate retention figure is higher than the perceived need, we return some of it to central government to distribute to other locations.
ACTION MP add explanatory note on the 100% business rate retention and top-up tariff system.
· There was a discussion on the valuation of Bristol Energy. This valuation was at 31 March. The figure in the accounts may not match the total sale of assets; there will be some movement up to the sale date. Members asked whether it was valued as a going concern and if this affected the price. The valuation was based on the customer base and meter points, not whether it was a going concern. The decision to sell is in the post balance sheet notes.
· The report has list of transactions between companies. Bristol Energy owes £251k interest to BCC. This is for the 19/20 period and has been paid, but the invoice was raised late March so was not paid at balance sheet date
· It was confirmed that City Leap was a dormant company. BCC undertakes the City Leap functions but may move this to a company footing if necessary in future.
· It was confirmed that the Managing Director for Bristol Energy was on a permanent contract.
· The accounts will be open for public inspection, would be helpful to outline public engagement process. Over the next 30 working days, members of the public can contact BCC via a generic email address with their enquiries. In previous years there were drop in sessions, but they will have to be managed differently due to Covid-19. Phone calls, Zoom or socially distanced.
· It was confirmed that public forum documents should be published ahead of meetings.