The Interim Director of Finance presented the Annual Governance Statement (AGS) 2020/21 and in doing so highlighted that the AGS formed part of the annual closure of accounts process and provided a corporate overview of the processes and procedures adopted by the Council to manage its affairs.
The preparation of an Annual Governance Statement (AGS) was necessary to meet the statutory requirements as set out in the Accounts and Audit (England) Regulations 2015. The Council’s AGS included the review of effectiveness of the Council’s governance arrangements, commentary on significant governance issues in 2020/21, and the up-to-date information on their resolution status under the ‘progress’ column in the AGS document.
It was noted that one of the Governance Recommendations which were highlighted in the external auditors’ Section 24 report and the Interim Auditors’ Annual Report 2020/21 pertained to the need for Members to be provided with key financial reports, including the Treasury Management Strategy which was not reported to the Committee in 2021/22, and risk monitoring updates. Officers stated that this would be considered by the Committee in the remaining meetings of this municipal year.
Following the presentation, Members asked a number of questions and commented on aspects of the Statement and the following was noted:
(1) that the arrangements for compiling, reporting on and signing the Draft Annual Governance Statement be noted;
(2) that the Draft Annual Governance Statement was reviewed and commented on, including any areas which should be considered; and,
(3) that subject to changes identified above, the Draft Annual Governance Statement be agreed and approved for signature by the Chief Executive Officer and Leader of the Council for inclusion in the Statement of Accounts.