Agenda item

Housing Revenue Account (HRA) Outturn 2022/2023



It is recommended that the committee scrutinise and comment on the proposals within the attached cabinet report, ref CAB3417 which is to be considered by cabinet at its meeting on the 13 September 2023.


Councillor Westwood introduced the report, ref CAB3417 which set out the Housing Revenue Account (HRA) Outturn 2022/23, (available here). The introduction included the following points.

1. In 2022/2023, the HRA Outturn indicated an overspend of £1.304 million and an adverse variance of £0.698 million, including a one-off accrual to be reversed in 2023/24.

2. There was a request to carry forward £18,000 of unspent set-up funding for the Housing Company into 2023/2024.

3. The 2022/2023 Capital program saw a carry forward of £14.44 million, with reprofiling for the capital program in 2023/2024 onwards.

4. Notable variances included:

a)    An employee underspend of £108,000.

b)    Premises overspend of £2 million, encompassing the mentioned accrual and a repair and maintenance overspend of £0.486 million.

c)    An overspend of £0.109 million on electricity costs.

d)    A net favourable variance of £0.622 million in net interest and depreciation due to lower interest payments, reduced capital spend, and a higher depreciation charge.

e)    Strong performance in void management and arrears, generating additional income of £0.2 million.

5. Capital program overspends, and underspends consisted of:

a)    An overspend of 2% on the Major Works budget, driven by fire prevention and roofing works.

b)    Underspend in estate improvement works amounting to £0.187 million.

c)    Sheltered schemes, including power door installation and fire safety work, resulting in a £0.24 million underspend.

d)    An underspend of £0.328 million on climate emergency works due to contractor difficulties.

e)    An underspend of £0.207 million on procuring a sewage treatment vehicle.

f)      An underspend of £13.03 million in the new homes program, detailed in section 11 of the report.

The committee was recommended to comment on the proposals within the attached report, ref CAB3417 which was to be considered by the cabinet at its meeting on 13 September 2023.

Councillor Lee addressed the committee and raised the following points:

1. In reference to section 1.2 and the capital program for retrofit works, he asked:

a)    When was the £15.7 million budget allocated?

b)    How much of this budget had been expended by the end of 2022/2023?

c)    How many homes had undergone upgrades by the end of 2022/2023?

d)    Had a new energy staff role been established, and if so, was it funded from the £15.7 million budget?

2. Regarding the revised Capital program budget for 2023/2024, he asked:

a)    Whether funding had been earmarked to address overheating, considering the vulnerability of over one-third of homes to overheating due to climate change.

b)    What measures were in place for existing homes considering recent building regulations that tackle overheating in new homes?

c)    He drew attention to recent reports titled "It's Getting Hot in Here" and the UK Green Building Council's statement, "The UK isn't built for this heat."

3. Regarding the challenges in recruiting and retaining housing staff, he requested information on the steps taken to mitigate this issue.

4. Regarding section 11.3 B, he sought more detailed information about the costs associated with the property at Tower Street.

David Chafe on behalf of Tenants and Council Together (TACT) advised that TACT were meeting shortly to discuss this report and were present this evening to observe the committee's debate.

The committee proceeded to ask questions and debate the report. In summary, the following matters were raised.

1.    The housing company's status, formation, role, and future operational stages.

2.    Explanations regarding the reported overspend on new build developments.

3.    Further details regarding the accrual mentioned in section 11.2 of the report.

4.    Sought information on depreciation and adjustment periods and their frequencies.

5.    Regarding the property on Tower Street and the £205,000 cost associated with it.

6.    The plans to address the underspend on fire safety provisions.

7.    How the council was managing potential disrepair compensation payments.

8.    The funding allocated for overheating mitigation measures and whether it was part of current plans.

9.    The impact of resourcing, staffing, and technical challenges on the capital program.

10. The expected number of new homes to be delivered in the revised budget for 2023/24.


These points were responded to by Councillor Westwood, Cabinet Member for Housing, Simon Hendey, Strategic Director, Gilly Knight, Corporate Head of Housing, Liz Keys, Corporate Head of Finance accordingly and were noted by Councillor Westwood.


1. Officers to review and respond to the matters raised in point number 10 above

2. Officers to consider the concerns raised in point number 8 above regarding overheating works a.

3. Officers to arrange a meeting with Councillor Horrill to discuss the accrual in section 11.2 of the report.

4. The Cabinet Member and officers to take note of the committee's comments.


Supporting documents:


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