Venue: Spencer Room, Town Hall, Middlesbrough
Contact: Susan Lightwing
Declarations of Interest
any declarations of interest.
no declarations of interest received at this point in the meeting.
The minutes of the Corporate Affairs meetings held on 10 and 16 March 2023 were submitted and approved as a correct record subject to the following amendment:
10 March 2023 – M Rutter, EY to be added to the attendance.
A report of the Director of
Finance (S151 Officer) was presented, the purpose of which was for Members of
the Committee to approve the Audited Statement of Accounts for 2020/21,
following completion of the external audit.
Members were asked to note the
final audit results reports from EY on the Council and Teesside Pension Fund
accounts, which summarised the various issues and adjustments required since
the audit commenced in June 2021. Also
included as appendices to the submitted report were letters of representation
for both sets of accounts. These were assurances from the Chief Finance Officer
and the Chair of the Committee in relation to the various matters that
underpinned the accounts and the processes adopted.
The draft Statement of Accounts
for 2020/21 was presented to the Corporate Affairs and Audit Committee on 5
August 2021 and provided details of the Council’s financial position, performance and cash flows at 31 March 2021, as well as how
it had performed against its revenue and capital budget plans. Significant issues included within the
financial statements were also discussed for information at that point in time.
Further updates were provided to
the Committee on progress during the audit, principally on the 31 March, 9 June and 22nd July 2022 when EY’s audit results report and
an updated Statement of Accounts were presented. These reports explained the
various delays experienced so far on the audit of the accounts and why the
statutory date had not been met.
At the meeting on 22 July 2022,
the Committee approved the audited statement of accounts subject to; the annual
governance statement being finalised and agreed by the Mayor, the Chief
Executive and the Director of Finance, and the Highways Infrastructure Assets
issue, which had been raised during the audit being resolved.
Since then, the Annual Governance
Statement had been revised and signed by appropriate officers. CIPFA and Central Government had issued a
statutory over-ride in respect of highways infrastructure, up to 2024/25, for
those local authorities who could not presently comply with the local authority
code of practice in this area.
Over time, several other issues
had been identified. The briefing note
produced for the Committee on 8 February 2023 gave more details around the
considerations for changes to the insurance provision, highways infrastructure
and the going concern assessment re financial sustainability. These had either
required changes to the financial statements, additional narrative disclosure,
or both, to reflect the fact that the accounts were almost two years past the
account’s preparation date.
In recent weeks, a couple of
further issues had needed to be considered as to whether they had an impact on
the accounts for 2020/21. These related to the triennial revaluation of the
Pension Fund at 31 March 2022, and the decision made by Executive in January to
wind-up Middlesbrough Development Company.
Any changes required for the items identified were included with the
Audited Statement of Accounts and were also noted in the external auditors’
final audit results reports.
Although the audit of the accounts ... view the full minutes text for item 22/77
A report of the Head of Financial
Planning and Support (Interim S151 Officer) was presented to provide Members of
the Corporate Affairs and Audit Committee with an overview of the final report
of an internal audit of Senior Management Reviews undertaken by Veritau. The audit
had been commissioned, following discussions with the Chair and Vice-Chair of
Corporate Affairs and Audit Committee, in May 2022 by the then Director of
Finance (S151 Officer).
It was agreed that the audit
would look at any restructures that primarily affected members of senior
management, since 2015/16. The purpose of the audit was to establish whether
savings proposed as part of those restructures had been achieved, where
The audit had now been completed
and a report prepared for comment by management. A copy of the confidential audit report had
been provided to all Members of the Committee.
The report highlighted a number of key findings and recommendations arising from
the audit. Appendix 1 to the submitted
report contained a summary of the key findings and the actions proposed by
management to address them. There was a
focus on ensuring that in the future there was increased transparency and
reporting of Senior Management Reviews, the savings arising from them and
achievement of any non-financial objectives identified.
AGREED that the findings of the internal audit report on previous Senior Management Reviews and the proposed management response for future reviews was received and noted.
Any other urgent items which in the opinion of the Chair, may be considered
The Chair thanked the Vice Chair, Committee Members and Officers for their contributions during the last four years. As it was their last meeting as Middlesbrough Councillors, the Chair also thanked Councillors C Hobson and T Mawston, commenting that they had been fantastic servants to their residents and to the Council.