City of York Council

Committee Minutes


Decision Session - Executive Member for Finance and Performance in Consultation with The Executive Member for Housing and Safer Neighbourhoods (for Agenda Item 4 – Interim Financial Inclusion/Welfare Benefits Update Report)



13 December 2021


Councillors Ayre (Executive Member for Finance and Performance and Craghill (Executive Member for Housing and Safer Neighbourhoods)




1.           Declarations of Interest


The Executive Members were asked to declare, at this point in the meeting, any personal interests, not included on the Register of Interests, or any prejudicial or disclosable pecuniary interests that he might have had in respect of business on the agenda. They confirmed they had none.





2.           Minutes


Resolved: That the minutes of the Decision Session held on 8 November 2021 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Executive Member.





3.           Public Participation


It was reported that there had been no registrations to speak

at the meeting under the Council’s Public Participation Scheme.





4.           Interim Financial Inclusion/Welfare Benefits Update Report


The Executive Members considered a report that provided a mid-term update including the ongoing impact of Coronavirus as well recent welfare benefits changes in York (including Universal Credit and support available for residents in dealing with those challenges); an update on benefits statistics and performance administered by the council including the York Financial Assistance Scheme; and other financial inclusion (FI) activity during 2021/22 including the delivery of Financial Inclusion Steering Group (FISG) grant schemes.


The Director of Customer and Communities explained that the impact of the pandemic continued and the council continued to invest in further support for people in York, with a forecast spend of £2.5 - £3million in further support for residents. An update on universal credit was given, with around 12,000 people claiming it at that time. The challenges around the cost of housing, food, fuel and childcare were noted. The work of the FISG and difference that its schemes were making was highlighted. The Head of Customer and Exchequer Services outlined the amounts sent out in direct payments to residents.


The Executive Member for Housing and Safer Neighbourhoods commented that winter was proving a difficult one for York residents with the council continuing to support tenants and link then to the support available. She noted the work of the YFAS and commended the work of the welfare benefits advisors and adult social care advisors. The Executive Member for Finance and Performance noted the impact that the funding was having on peoples lives. They then;


Resolved:  That the report and the progress made in supporting residents who are financially vulnerable be noted.

Reason:     To ensure councillors, residents and stakeholder groups are aware of the ongoing financial inclusion activity across the city and use of associated funding including covid-19 support.  


[The Executive Member for Housing and Safer Neighbourhoods left the meeting at 11.12]





5.           Approval of ICT procurements with a whole life contract value of over £250k: HR & Payroll System


The Executive Member considered a report detailing a procurement to renew or replace a core ICT system in the council with a whole life contract value of over £250k. This was defined as a non-key routine procurement as per the council’s contract procedure rules and expenditure fell within existing capital and revenue budget provisions. The Director of Customer and Communities explained that was a retrospective report to meet the requirement for transparency regarding procurements of this nature. Due to the contract renewal timescales the procurement was approved by a published officer decision in line with the council’s Constitution. 


The Director of Customer and Communities noted that all procurement came through the ICT procurement board and that the procurement for the HR and payroll system was good value with a minimal increase in cost. The Executive Member then;


Resolved: That the reprocurement of a HR & Payroll system for the council at a total three year cost of £343k (as detailed in Annex A of the report) be noted.


Reason:     To ensure the that councillors consider routine procurement decisions over £250k in value in line with procurement regulations and the public have the opportunity to see transparent decision-making in operation relating to major procurements.









Cllr Ayre, Executive Member

[The meeting started at 11.00 am and finished at 11.16 am].




























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