Tonight 18/10/16 the Overview & Scrutiny Committee meet in the Civic Centre at 7pm.
On the agenda at Item Six is the general-fund-revenue-budget-monitoring-2nd-quarter-201617 which at Para 2.5 remarks that Oportunitas Ltd
“The main reason for the reduction in income is the lower than anticipated interest receivable from Oportunitas Ltd on loans advanced to it by the council. Oportunitas’ housing acquisitions programme is taking longer to progress than originally planned meaning a delay in the drawing down of loans from the council to support this. This is reflected in the General Fund Capital Budget Monitoring report being separately considered by Cabinet as part of this agenda.” ( 5pm Civic Centre 19/10/16).
Now does this truly surprise you when we discovered anomalies in their accounts in July 2016?
Oportunitas details are at Companies House, so are open to you the public. It owes it creditors, SDC, the princely sum of £812,996 and is failing to pay down the interest as anticipated. Should SDC stick to what it knows best?
Anyway, also on the agenda at item-five at Para 2.17 is the little known fact that SDC will be passing along the handsome sum of £150,000 to the Folkestone Triennial.
Does Sir Roger De Haan need more tax payers money, when it is reported that he had already received funding totalling over £100 million by 2010.
“The Creative Foundation secured £33 million from the Roger de Haan charitable trust, as part of a package of funding totalling over £100 million with other supporters including SEEDA, SELEP, Channel Corridor AIF, Kent County Council and Arts Council.”
Since 2010, Sir Roger has received more taxpayers money. Does he need money from the public purse?
Will SDC get value for money by passing along £150,000 to Sir Roger when it was reported he was worth £800 million in 2012?
We’ll leave to decide that.
At the Cabinet Meeting on Wednesday 19th October at 5pm, Civic Centre Item 11 will discuss and vote on
Member protocol relating to Otterpool park Development
Report C/16/59 sets out the role and responsibilities of Members directly involved with the Otterpool Park Development project. The council is the local planning authority under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 and is responsible for the determination of planning applications and the formulation of planning policies. The council also has an interest as a landowner in the development of the land at Otterpool. As a result of this it is recognised that conflicts of interest should be avoided and that councillors should follow the protocols attached to this report.
Finally, at Item six (as per first paragraph) we note that spending on Housing Benefit will adversely impact on SDC to the tune of £461,000. This is because more people who are in work are needing to make claims for Housing Benefit.
Yes in 2013/14 there was a reduction in real terms by £150 million across the UK, but since then it has risen, again to what it was in 2012
“Only one in eight people drawing [Housing Benefit] is out of work; the rest are low earners.”
We need houses, but SDC have cut there Housing Builds from 300 to 200 council homes, not something which will help alleviate the problem.
Members of the Cabinet & Opposition have large private housing portfolio’s of their own, and they do receive Housing Benefit not just from SDC but other local councils too. Is this money well spent? We’ll leave you to decide that.