To consider a report in respect of the Redmond Review on the quality of local authority reporting and external audit.
The Strategic Director (CF) presented a report updating Members on the Redmond Review and advising Members of any impending changes to future Statement of Accounts and External Audit.
The views of the Council’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO) were reported along with Ernst and Young’s comments on the Redmond Report.
The following issues were raised during the debate:
· It was noted that the current fee system was not adequate but this could mean fee increases which should be consistent across all councils;
· The deadline for publishing audited local authority accounts be revisited with a view to extending it to 30 September from 31 July each year. This was seen as a backward step by the CFO as it would impact on other functions provided by the Council such as budget monitoring and medium term planning and budget setting. However, the Audit companies welcomed the change.
· Whether there was scope to simplify the presentation of local authority accounts prior to communication of the information to council taxpayers/service users.
It was RESOLVED:
That the outcome of the review is noted by the Audit
That the views of the Council’s Chief Finance Officer (CFO)
(3) That the views of the Council’s External Auditors are noted.