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Powys Council spend nearly £62 million on building projects in 2020/21

JUST over half of the money set aside for Powys building projects was spent during the 2020/21 financial year.

At a Powys County Council cabinet meeting on Tuesday, June 22, Finance portfolio holder, Cllr Aled Davies, explained that numerous projects during the last year had to be put on hold due to coronavirus pandemic.

Originally £132 million had been set aside for capital projects.

Due to the ongoing pandemic causing delays to projects, some of this money had already been passed on to budgets to be used in the future in a process called “virement.”
Cllr Davies, said: “The final working budget for the last financial year with approved virements was almost £72.91 million pounds and the actual spend was £61.83 million which is 85 per cent of that working budget.

“The programme has obviously been disrupted by the pandemic with expenditure for some projects having to be reprofiled and rolled forward into this financial year and beyond.

“The slippage on these schemes together with the receipt of new capital streams has seen a reduction in the need to borrow.”

Cllr Davies explained that 38 per cent of the finance had been borrowed and the interest charged to the budget was just over £10 million or 3.8 per cent of the net revenue budget of £269 million.

Originally when the 2020/21 budget had been agreed, £12.18 million had been set aside to support borrowing.

And of this year’s programme 56 per cent had been expected to be funded through borrowing.

Head of finance, Jane Thomas said: “We have an extensive capital programme and although the need of borrowing this year has been reduced, that need will still be there in future years as we fulfil the programme.”

A number of grants have been received during the last quarter of these include:

An Active Travel Grant offer from July 2020 to reduce the funding by £570,000 and a grant of £1.26 million from the Welsh Government Transforming Towns Programme
The report was noted by the cabinet.

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