Issue - meetings

Reconciling Policy, Performance and Resources (RPPR) 2022/23 - People

Meeting: 18/11/2021 - People Scrutiny Committee (Item 22)

22 Reconciling Policy, Performance and Resources (RPPR) pdf icon PDF 394 KB

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22.1     The Chair introduced the item, setting out that the report was the next stage of the Committee’s engagement in the annual RPPR process and noting that the Committee was asked to consider if any further work or information was required to aid the Committee’s December RPPR Board. The Director of Adult Social Care and Chief Finance Officer then introduced the report which set out the Council’s latest policy and financial position in planning for the 2022/23 financial year.


22.2     Further guidance on the national ASC reforms announced in September (introducing a lifetime cap on personal care costs and more generous means-test for local authority financial support) had been published. The Director of Adult Social Care gave a verbal update to the Committee on the further detail provided, which covered:


·         Social care allowances - from April 2022, the Minimum Income Guarantee for those receiving care in their own homes and the Personal Expenses Allowance for care home residents would be un-frozen and rise in line with inflation. Effectively, this would mean that people would need to contribute slightly less to the cost of their care.


·         Daily Living Costs – the lifetime cap on personal care costs would not cover Daily Living Costs for people in care homes. For simplicity, Daily Living Costs would be set at a national, notional £200 per week. The ASC Department had some concerns this rate did not truly reflect living costs (a national proposal in 2015 had suggested this figure should be £230 per week) and could, as a result, increase the proportion of care home fees local authorities would need to resource.


·         Cap implementation –

o   from October 2023, anyone assessed by a local authority as having eligible care needs would begin to progress towards the £86,000 lifetime care cap. For each person with eligible needs, the local authority must provide either a personal budget, where the local authority would meet the person’s needs, or an independent personal budget (IPB), where the individual would arrange their own care. The personal budget would set out the cost to the local authority of the care they had arranged, whereas the IPB would set out what it would have cost the local authority to meet the person’s needs. In order to do this, every local authority would need to determine affordable care rates for their area. This also meant that, in practice, people being assessed for care in an area with high care rates would reach the care cap much faster than areas with lower rates.


o   Local authorities would be required to set up care accounts to track individuals’ progress towards the care cap, with guidance placing the legal responsibility on local authorities to tell people when they had reached the cap. This made it vital for ESCC to ensure that there was a robust system in place for tracking personal care costs and informing people when they reached the cap.


22.3     The Director and Chief Finance Officer concluded that, on initial assessment, the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 22

Meeting: 16/09/2021 - People Scrutiny Committee (Item 12)

12 Reconciling Policy, Performance and Resources (RPPR) pdf icon PDF 398 KB

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12.1     The report was introduced by Philip Baker (Assistant Chief Executive).  He outlined that  this is the start of scrutiny’s engagement in the budget setting process for 2022/23 and beyond. The State of the County report considered by Cabinet in July set out the detailed financial planning context for rest of the year and beyond.  However, the financial and policy position remains one of uncertainty and there have been a number of developments since July which will be covered in a RPPR report to Cabinet in September 2021.   There have also been a number of significant Government announcements which include:


  • There will be a three-year financial settlement following the spending review which is likely to be published on 27 October 2021.


  • The Government is aiming for a balanced budget from the financial years 2023/24 through to 2025/26.


  • The Government has announced plans for Health and Social Care reform which will be funded by a 1.25% levy on National Insurance contributions made by employers and employees. Details will be set out in a White paper which will be published later in the year. The impact on East Sussex could be significant in terms of the local care market and on local health partners.


12.2     The Committee discussed the report and a summary of the key points discussed is set out below.


  • In response to a query regarding the one-off reserve contribution referred to in paragraph 1.5 of the covering report, Members were informed by Ian Gutsell (Chief Finance Officer) that due to the pandemic some of the pressures included in earlier financial planning had not occurred.  As a result an opportunity had arisen to explore into the autumn the use of £8.855m one-off funding for investment in areas that will help better manage future demand for services or support the delivery of priorities such as highways or climate change.  It was also clarified that the savings set out in the report are ‘legacy savings’ resulting from decisions taken in previous years and that the Medium Term Financial Plan for next year does not contain plans for new savings to be identified.


  • The Committee asked about the steps being taken to address delays in children and young people receiving a diagnosis from Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).   In response the Alison Jeffery (Director of Children Services) informed Members that the Department is in discussion with colleagues from the local NHS Trust about what can be done to streamline the referral pathway and deliver quicker responses.  Work is also being undertaken to raise awareness amongst the wider workforce of neural diversity in children. It is hoped this will result in more children and young people gaining access to support in a more timely manner, without necessarily requiring a formal diagnosis.  Furthermore, additional funding has been provided by central government to support children’s mental health.  The Department are therefore actively engaging with NHS partners to help ensure the best use of the funding.  
  • With regard to the Government’s announcement of introducing  ...  view the full minutes text for item 12