Agenda and minutes

Audit & Governance Committee - Tuesday 2nd September 2014 6.00 pm

Venue: Orwell Room, Grafton House. View directions

Contact: Trisha Sutton  01473 432512

Items
No. Item

21.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

21.1    Apologies for absence were received from Councillor D Goldsmith and Mr A Hanson.

22.

Unconfirmed Minutes of the Meeting held on 1 July 2014 pdf icon PDF 56 KB

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

that the minutes of the meeting held on 1 July 2014 be signed as a true record.

23.

To confirm the dates of the next meetings:

·         Tuesday 9 December 2014

·         Tuesday 3 March 2015

Minutes:

23.1    Prior to the meeting to be held on the 9 December 2014, a training session would be held on Treasury Management.

 

23.2    Prior to the meeting to be held on 3 March 2015, a training session would be held on Performance and Risk Management.

 

Resolved:

 

that the meetings of the Audit & Governance Committee be as printed on the agenda, to commence at 6.00pm.

24.

To Confirm or Vary the Order of Business

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

that the Order of Business be confirmed as printed on the Agenda.

25.

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

25.1    Councillor Knowles declared an interest in Item 6, AG/14/11 Annual Statement of Accounts 2013/14, the Annual Governance Statement and the Annual Report to those charged with Governance, as a member of the Suffolk County Council Pension Fund Committee.

 

25.2    Councillor J Cook declared an interest in Item 7, AG/14/12 Financial Management and Control Corporate Budget Monitoring Update 2014/15, as a Director of the East of England Co-operative.

26.

AG/14/11 Annual Statement of Accounts 2013/14, the Annual Governance Statement and the Annual Report to those charged with Governance pdf icon PDF 58 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

26.1    The Finance & Procurement Operations Manager presented the Annual Statement of Accounts 2013/14 to the Committee prior to it being submitted to Council on 17 September 2014.

 

26.2    Mr Julian Rickett from PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PWC), (the Council’s External Auditors) presented the report to those charged with governance and detailed the significant findings in the Audit Summary, in particular that the receipt of outstanding bank and investment confirmations had now been completed.  

 

26.3    The management response to the three significant internal control deficiencies had been circulated separately and the Auditor confirmed that these were acceptable and the letter of representation from PWC had been tabled at the meeting.  The Auditor and the Officer both confirmed that in respect of no control being in place within the Agresso System to prevent an employee from inputting and authorising a single journal, this held no risk as no cash would be handled, individuals could not benefit and therefore no fraud or loss through processing a journal would be perpetuated.  No uncorrected misstatements had been found during the audit and there would be no anticipated change to the audit fees for the work undertaken by PWC.

 

26.4    In response to a question about recent changes to the Local Government Pension Scheme, the Operations Manager reported that although the Actuaries updated this on a 3 yearly basis, the authority would be reviewing it on an annual basis.  If tax free cash sums were taken, this should be neutral to the fund liability, but concern was expressed that with poor returns (due to the recession) and the longevity of life the burden on the Pension Fund would continue.

 

26.5    The Officer confirmed that the annual leave allowance for staff commenced from the end of the month from the date which they started in service, although there was an option for employees to change this.    

 

26.6    In response to a question about the definition of the market value of items held by the Colchester and Ipswich Museums Service, the Officer confirmed that the qualified museum curators currently valued items, as the costs to have items valued externally were prohibitive.  The external Auditor explained that this was in line with the CIPFA Code and confirmed that Zurich Municipal were the external insurers of the Authority.

 

Resolved:

 

1.    that the Annual Statement of Accounts 2013/14, attached at Appendix 1 to report Ref No: AG/14/11, be noted and submitted to Council for approval.

 

2.    that the Annual Governance Statement for the year ended 31 March 2014, attached at Appendix 2 to report Ref No: AG/14/11, be noted and submitted to Council for approval.

 

3.    that the Annual Report to those charged with Governance (ISA260), attached at Appendix 3 to report Ref No: AG/14/11, be noted.

 

4.    that the notice of availability of accounts and supporting information for inspection by the public, attached at Appendix 4 to report Ref No: AG/14/11, be noted.

27.

AG/14/12 Financial Management and Control Corporate Budget Monitoring - Update 2014/15 pdf icon PDF 105 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

27.1    The Operations Manager for Finance and Procurement presented this report to the Committee prior to it being submitted to Executive on 9 September 2014. 

 

27.2    One supplementary estimate had been requested to address a shortfall by Bereavement Services and the actions taken to address this were listed.  Also detailed were items ‘on watch’ which did not currently require any budget amendments and it was confirmed that Operations Managers would be required to supply detailed reports for the second quarter budget report and include any actions to be taken to address these. 

 

27.3    Discussion took place about the reduction of the market share of the Bereavement Service business, the refurbishment works undertaken during 2012, the reduction in burials and the difficulty in predicting the income.  A review of how different pricing models could be made more attractive to funeral directors would be undertaken.

 

27.4    In response to a question about current trade waste business it was reported that large national companies often procured their services on a national basis which would exclude any local authority tendering.        

 

Resolved:

 

that the Audit and Governance Committee recommend to Executive that:

 

1.    the service budget performance for the General Fund, be noted.

 

Reason: To facilitate effective budgetary control.

 

2.    the Supplementary Estimate from ‘Additional Commitments’ for General Fund Services of £120,000, be approved by Executive;

 

Reason: To facilitate effective budgetary control.

 

3.    the future years effects for the General Fund, be noted;

 

Reason:  To facilitate effective budget planning.

 

4.    the service budget performance for the Housing Revenue Account, be noted;

 

Reason: To facilitate effective budgetary control.

 

5.    the budget performance for the Shared Revenues Partnership (SRP), be noted;

 

Reason: To facilitate effective budgetary control.

 

6.    the position on the 2014/15 and future years Capital Programme and financing resources, be noted;

 

Reason: To facilitate effective budgetary control.

 

7.    the changes to the Capital Programme detailed in paragraphs 10.2 to 10.3 be approved;

 

Reason: To facilitate effective budgetary control.

 

8.    the position in respect of the Council’s Treasury Management activities during 2014/15, be noted.

 

Reason: To facilitate effective treasury management activity.

28.

AG/14/13 Internal Audit Report - Recently Issued Reports pdf icon PDF 53 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

 Resolved:

 

that the contents of the Audit Reports on the following, be noted and the recommendations within the following reports be endorsed.

 

1.    Creditors (653)

2.    Payroll (654)

3.    Debtors (655)

4.    NNDR (657)

5.    Housing Benefits (658)

29.

AG/14/14 Audit & Governance Committee Future Work Programme 2014/15 pdf icon PDF 40 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

29.1    The Committee requested that a senior management member of the Colchester and Ipswich Museums Service be invited to respond to their concerns about the Service at the meeting on 9 December 2014.  

 

Resolved:

 

that the Audit and Governance Work Programme 2014-15, with the amendment listed above, be agreed.

30.

Exclusion of Public

To consider excluding the public (including the Press) from the meeting during consideration of the following item(s) under section 100(A) of the Local Government Act 1972 as it is likely that if members of the public were present during that item there would be disclosure to them of exempt information as defined within paragraphs 1, 2, 3 & 4 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act.

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

that the public (including the Press) be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following items under section 100(A) of the Local Government Act 1972 as it is likely that if members of the public were present during the items there would be disclosure to them of exempt information falling within Paragraphs 1, 2, 3 and 4 of Schedule 12A of the Act.

Not For Publication

31.

Unconfirmed Exempt Minutes of the meeting held on 1 July 2014

32.

AG/14/15 Internal Audit Reports - Museums Merged Services - NFP

Minutes:

Resolved:

 

33.

AG/14/16 Internal Audit - Recently Issued Reports NFP

Minutes:

Resolved: