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Shropshire Council
Abbey Foregate

Agenda and minutes

Venue: Shrewsbury/Oswestry Room, Shirehall, Abbey Foregate, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, SY2 6ND. View directions

Contact: Ashley Kendrick Democratic Services Officer 


No. Item




Apologies had been received from Councillor David Vasmer. Apologies were also received from Councillor Julia Buckley who joined the meeting remotely.


Disclosable Interests

Members are reminded that they must declare their disclosable pecuniary interests and other registrable or non-registrable interests in any matter being considered at the meeting as set out in Appendix B of the Members’ Code of Conduct and consider if they should leave the room prior to the item being considered. Further advice can be sought from the Monitoring Officer in advance of the meeting.


No declarations of interest were received.


Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 233 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 4 December 2023.




That the minutes of the meeting held on 4 December 2023 be confirmed as an accurate record.


Public Question Time

To receive any questions from members of the public.  Deadline for notification is 5.00 pm on Thursday 4 January 2024.


There were no public questions.


Member Question Time

To receive any questions of which members of the Council have given notice.  Deadline for notification is 5.00 pm on Thursday 4 January 2024.


There were no members’ questions.


Alternative Budget Proposals 2024/25 pdf icon PDF 408 KB

To consider alternative budget proposals for 2024/25.


The Executive Director of Resources introduced the report which provided three alternative budget proposals from the Labour group, Liberal Democrat group and the Green group. The Independent group declined to submit a proposal. Members were reminded of the national issues surrounding the increase in costs for adults and children’s social care, inflation and the cost of living which had played a large role in the budget funding gap. It was stated that at the beginning of the alternative budget process, the gap was £23.6m which did not include the pressures within adults and children’s social care.


Members were advised that in relation to Appendix 1b from the Labour group, it had not been possible for this to be reviewed and assurances could not be given regarding figures; therefore this had been included for transparency purposes only.


Members considered the budget proposals from each group line by line.


With regards to the proposal from the Labour group to insource the Kier contract, the Executive Director of Place advised that a mixed economy system had been introduced in which minor repairs were now done in house with major works being carried out by Kier. This had resulted in a reduction in the backlog of repairing potholes by 75% and saved £1.4m per annum since its introduction in 2020. It was felt that this system allowed the council to benefit from Kier’s buying power and procurement rate whilst maximising outputs and dealing with localised issues. It was noted that there was a shortfall in specialist staff and therefore it would be difficult to recruit a full inhouse team. This would also be the case for insourcing the WSP and traffic management contracts.


It was stated that there were opportunities to review the contract and renegotiations had taken place over its duration; an example of which was litter collection which had changed the value of the contract and was commercially beneficial for both organisations. The re-procurement process would commence in the Spring.


A query was raised regarding the number of staff involved in the Kier contract. Members were advised that there were five members of staff responsible for the management of the contract but that this information would be unknown as it would be within Kier’s jurisdiction to decide on the amount of staff required to deliver its outcomes. It was stated that in general terms, contractors would receive between 2-4% profit, however they had much greater purchasing power than if services were provided in house. The leader of the Labour group felt that the council would have more control over costs and a greater oversight on what is being delivered if services were insourced.


It was noted that there would be on costs if insourcing took place and that these costs would be passed to the residents. Third party expenditure was being investigated as part of the budget discussions and the transformation scheme.


Concern was raised regarding the timescale in which opposition groups had to seek data due to the Christmas break. Certain  ...  view the full minutes text for item 46.


Work Programme pdf icon PDF 436 KB

To consider proposals for the Committee’s work programme 2023 – 2024, attached


Members noted the committee’s work programme for 2023 – 2024.


Date of Next Meeting

To note that the next meeting is scheduled to take place on Monday 19 February 2024.


Members noted that the next meeting is scheduled to take place on Monday 19 February 2024.


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