Agenda and minutes
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Apologies for absence
Apologies for Absence were received from Councillors Mike Hewitson, Malcom Cavill, Tim Kerley and Jeny Snell. Colin Winder and Louise Clarke were substitutes for Malcom Cavill and Tim Kerley.
The Chairman informed members that Jeny Snell would be stepping down from Audit Committee for personal reasons. He thanked her for her time and contribution.
Declarations of Interest
In accordance with the Council's current Code of Conduct (as amended 26 February 2015), which includes all the provisions relating to Disclosable Pecuniary Interests (DPI), personal and prejudicial interests, Members are asked to declare any DPI and also any personal interests (and whether or not such personal interests are also "prejudicial") in relation to any matter on the agenda for this meeting.
There were no declarations of interest.
Public question time
There were no members of the public present.
Date of next meeting
Members noted the date of the next Audit meeting was scheduled for 10am on Thursday 30th September 2021.
The Principal Auditor (SWAP) presented the update report which updated members on the internal audit plan 2021/22 progress. He highlighted the summary page of the report that showed the work completed since the last update in May and summarised to members the key findings from those completed audits which included;
· Section 106 given limited assurance
· Transformation close down work
· Fraud impact risk of Covid19
· Risk Management
· Commercial investments
During discussion the principal Auditor(SWAP) and the S151 officer responded to points of detail including:
· The meaning of NFI on page 14 of the agenda stood for National Fraud Institute.
· That the Council currently has £4.9m of S106 monies.
· A breakdown of the detail of which benefits of transformation were realised would be provided to members for the September meeting.
· The narrative report (part of the statement of accounts that would be coming to Audit Committee in September) will show that Covid19 did not impact adversely on the bottom line of the Councils finances in 2020/21 as central government support covered the loss of income and all the grant payments that had been made.
· All the commercial investments recommendations were considered low priority and all due for implementation by the end of September.
Members asked for an update to be provided regarding Section 106 and to have some assurance that we were not missing timed out monies.
In light of the recently announced proposals to reorganise Somerset into one unitary authority, one member asked for an update in terms of ongoing projects including assurance that projects are still going ahead or how they may be affected in the future. The interim S151 Officer explained that it was too soon to say in concrete terms and that she hoped to have more information on this within the Medium Term Financial Plan refresh report going to District Executive in the early autumn. The final details would only be known when central government publishes the Structural Change Order in the new calendar year.
There were no further questions and the committee were content to note the report.
RESOLVED: That the Audit committee
Noted progress made in delivery of the 2021/22 internal audit plan and the significant findings since the previous update.
RESOLVED: Audit members noted the Forward Plan and agreed to add the following items;
· Draft Statement of accounts - September 2021
· Update on Somerset Reorganisation and any impact on the progression and financing of current council projects - TBC
· Section 106 Update - TBC