Venue: Remote -Skype Meeting
Contact: Email: Democratic.Services@swdevon.gov.uk
Meeting held on 21 January 2020
* AC 1
The Minutes of the Committee Meeting held on 21 January 2020 were confirmed and signed by the Chairman as a correct record.
The external auditor took Members through the report. This has been delayed being brought to committee due to Covid-19. Audit timetable has moved to the end of November 2020. This is the original report that would have been presented at the March Committee. The Audit plan was presented to Council in April. Included in that report was the audit fee which has been confirmed with the S151 Officer & PSAA.
First time for a fully remote audit. Looking at practical issues around carrying this out.
It was then RESOLVED that:
The content of the Report and Update was noted.
* AC 3
Cllr Edmonds introduced members to the report. The internal Auditor took the members through the report. Business continuity is shown as improving. Debtors income collection is still ongoing. In response to questions the internal auditor stated this is an historic report. Since this report was written Covid-19 has had an impact and assurance mapping will take place. With experience and dialogue with officers an opinion would be sought. Remote meetings via Skype with SLT will look at the 2021 plan. New systems have been introduced with business grants being processed and robust testing has been taking place.
Budget monitoring will be done on a monthly basis rather than quarterly due to the current financial climate.
Purchase card improvement control to put limit on cards and line managers to check on cards. An explanation was provided by the S151 Officer that the spend was typically IT spend or spend relating to the Council’s out of hours provision of services. The responsibility for purchasing cards has been transferred to the Finance Specialist Team.
It was then RESOLVED that:
1. The Audit Committee noted that overall and based on work performance during 2019/20, and that of our experience from previous year’s audit, the Head of Internal Audit’s Opinion is of “Substantial Assurance” on the adequacy and effectiveness of the Authority’s internal control framework.
2. Members noted the performance and achievements of the Internal Audit Team during 2019/20
PART TWO – ITEMS WHICH MAY BE TAKEN IN THE ABSENCE OF THE PUBLIC AND PRESS ON THE GROUNDS THAT EXEMPT INFORMATION MAY BE DISCLOSED (if any).
The Committee is recommended to pass the following resolution:
“RESOLVED that under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the Meeting on the grounds that exempt information may be disclosed as defined in the paragraph given below in bold type from Part I of Schedule 12(A) to the Act.”
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Cllr Jory introduced the report on the Corporate Risk Register. In reply to a member question in regard to the leisure centres the S151 Officer responded that once government guidance is given to re-opening of the leisure industry more updates can be given. The Council has been successful in securing a Sports England grant (Lottery funding of £4,560 across both Councils) for external support to ensure that the impact on the contract is minimised and the Centres are in the best position to adapt and react to the future environment, delivering services for customers (such as increased health and wellbeing). Members will be kept updated.
It was RESOLVED that:
The Audit Committee reviewed the Strategic Risk & Opportunity Register (Appendix 1) and made recommendations to Council on any further action the Committee concludes should be considered.
The Chairman thanked the S151 officer and finance team for all their hard work.