Following the meeting of the Executive on Thursday 16 June 2022, the following items were resolved.
Housing Delivery Test and action plan
The Housing Delivery Test (HDT) is an annual measurement of how the Council is performing against its planned housing requirement of 292 dwellings per year. The HDT is measured and published by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.
The test is calculated by taking the total net homes delivered over the past three years divided by the total number of homes required over the same period. The expectation is to deliver 100% of planning housing requirement. According to the report, Woking currently delivers 78% of its housing requirement. Council Officers, however, are of the view that the Council is delivering around 88% of its requirement.
Local authorities not meeting 95% of their requirement are required to prepare an action plan which may also include identifying additional land to improve the prospect of achieving planned housing requirement (292 dwellings per year).
Speaking at the meeting, Portfolio Holder for Planning, Cllr Liam Lyons, said: “The main reasons for the under delivery to date in recent years has been linked to the pandemic and the knock-on effect on the construction industry, labour, supply chains and materials.”
Members of the Executive resolved to request Officers write to the Government to challenge the figures and assumptions, whilst giving delegated authority to Officers to prepare and publish an action plan setting out how the Council will achieve its housing targets. The Executive noted that these targets can be met from existing housing allocations and commitments.
Treasury Management annual report 2021/2022
As a member of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA), the Council is committed to publishing an annual Treasury Management report.
The annual report has an important scrutiny role, as it provides details of the treasury activities and demonstrates compliance with the Council’s Treasury Management strategy and polices previously approved by elected members.
Speaking at the meeting, Cllr Dale Roberts, Portfolio Holder for Economic Development and Finance, said: “It’s a technical report to comply with the CIPFA Code of Practice on treasury management. It provides details on the borrowing and investment during the year, as well as the borrowing strategy adopted for the year.”
The Executive received the report on treasury management performance for 2021/2022.
Risk Management and Business Continuity annual report
Risk and business continuity management are the two main ways that the Council identifies, manages, and mitigates its business and operational risks. The annual report outlines activities or issues that have occurred.
When discussing the item at the meeting, Leader of Woking Borough Council, Cllr Ann-Marie Barker, said: “It is absolutely key that we have the appropriate strategies in place to manage risks and plans for business continuity in the running of the Council. Training will be provided on risk to Officers and councillors and the Overview and Scrutiny Committee will be looking at the latest on risk in the autumn.”
The Executive noted the report and that risk management arrangements will continue to be reviewed and updated in line with agreed monitoring arrangement.
Performance and financial monitoring
The latest performance and financial monitoring report, known as the Green Book, was received by the Executive.
Monitoring reports – projects
The regular report provides an update of progress on the Council’s developments, incorporating capital and revenue projects.
There are currently 51 projects in delivery or at practical completion. The report identifies no specific areas of concern.
Members of the Executive received the report.
All remaining items and motions were recommended to the Full Council meeting on Thursday 21 July for determination.