Agenda item

Financial Management Review Report from 1 April 2019 - 31 July 2019


The Joint Committee considered the Financial Management Review report for the period 1 April to 31 July 2019, detailing the income and expenditure incurred to 31 July 2019 and the variances expected at year end. The variances due to employee expenses, premises related expenses and variances in supplies and services were reported.  Members noted that the forecast position to 31 March 2020 was a surplus of £761,079 compared to the budgeted surplus of £869,652 which was a reduction of £108,573.


In noting the reason for the above reduced amount Members queried what action was being taken to advertise the facilities available at the crematorium.  The Director & Registrar stated that conversations were regularly held with funeral directors that used the Mansfield facility.  The drop off in usage was attributable to the outlying areas where families of the deceased chose facilities which were closer to their home.  In relation to costs being competitive, the feedback from the funeral directors was positive. 


In response, a Member of the Committee commented that he would wish to see a more formal arrangement made with the funeral directors, suggesting that this could possibly be undertaken by an Officer of one of the constituent authorities.  The Director & Registrar suggested that it may be beneficial to hold an open evening providing light refreshments, with both funeral directors and the Members of this Committee being invited to attend.  This would offer all parties the opportunity to discuss the current facilities and what they would wish to see in the future.  The Member added that he would also wish to see a joint letter of support from the Leaders of the three authorities. 


In relation to the timing of such an event, it was suggested that it be held when the website was fully operational and that it would also offer the opportunity of reaffirming that the facility was fully operational when the programmed capital works commenced. 


Members discussed whether the facility remained competitive in relation to new and existing crematoria.  The Director & Registrar advised that the fees and charges had been adjusted in April 2019 and that a pre-10am service had been made available at a reduced price.  A service at this cost was also available to: public health funerals; those families on a limited budget; or those who wished to hold a ‘no frills’ funeral. 


Members requested that a report providing figures be compiled in relation to which funeral directors had used the Mansfield Crematorium, both in the past and recently and that this could also be looked at from the view point of population growth in the constituent areas.  Other information to be fed into the report was information as to what other crematoriums offered to their customers so that a comparison could be undertaken.


The Director & Registrar advised Members that many of the funeral directors were having to restructure their businesses due to the downturn in the number of funerals.  She also advised that there was an increasing number of families who were choosing to have ‘do-it-yourself’ funerals thereby reducing the cost.

AGREED      that:


(a)     the financial information provided in Appendix 1 and Table 3 of the report be noted;


(b)     the capital budget increase of £835 identified in 3.2.5 be approved;


(c)     an opening evening for funeral directors and Members of the Committee be held, the date of which was to coincide with when the website was fully operational; and


(d)     a report be presented to a future meeting of the Committee detailing which funeral directors had used the Mansfield Crematorium, both in the past and recently.  The report to provide information as to how population growth had and could, in the future, affect the usage of the facility and to also provide information as to what other crematoriums offered to their customers so that a comparison could be undertaken.

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