Council to hand over another £600,000 to cover deficit in Doncaster Children’s Services Trust

Doncaster Council are expected to hand over more money to cover a budget deficit in children’s services.

Monday, 25th February 2019, 3:09 pm
Updated Monday, 25th February 2019, 3:12 pm
Doncaster Children's Services Trust

Doncaster Children’s Services Trust, an independent body who work closely with the council, are set to be given another £600,000 on top of the £6 million they received in October 2018.

A lump sum of £3.7 million was be handed to the Trust with the remaining £2.3 million being paid in monthly installments.  

The council used an underspend of £2.1m of prepayment on the pension deficit and future service rates and £3.9 million on funding released for a ‘capital programme’. 

Documents show children and adult social care finances are the biggest budgetary pressure on the council.

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In papers which will go before Cabinet next week, bosses have said DCST has an overspend of £500,000 due to ‘additional legal costs and three extra ‘high cost temporary placements’ which were deemed ‘necessary’.

Bosses also said ‘69 more young people’ are forecast to be supported in 2018/19 ‘than was assumed in the budget’.

The Trust is expected to become an arms length management organisation (ALMO) before the end of the current financial year. 

Under the new arrangements, DCST will continue to provide children’s services in Doncaster until an agreed date. However, the council will become the sole owner of DCST and will have more influence over how the company is run.

A Doncaster Council spokesman said:  “Joint work is progressing on strengthening our collective commissioning arrangements, to support improved care outcomes and better value for money, and the production of a new placements strategy, based on detailed care ladder modelling and the identification of initiatives to reduce demand pressures.

“It is proposed to provide £0.6m to the Children’s Trust to meet the estimated additional costs for 2018/19.”

Cabinet members on Doncaster Council are expected to sign off the money at a meeting on Tuesday, February 26.