North Tyneside council ‘satisfied’ with finances after external audit

The Audit Committee of North Tyneside Council has been advised that the financial management of the Council for the year is in good standing.

According to the report: “The overall performance of internal audit work during the 2021/22 financial year revealed that the internal control systems in the areas audited were effective.

“The opinion of the head of internal audit is therefore that at the date of establishment of this report, the internal control systems of the organization in the areas audited are satisfactory.

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“This is a positive assessment of the authority’s control environment and reflects favorably on the organization’s governance arrangements.”

The report identified two areas of concern, namely hardware and software management and debt and revenue management.

The audit acknowledged that it could only provide “limited assurance” in these areas. Limited assurance is defined as “weaknesses in the design or consistent non-compliance with key controls jeopardize the achievement of the organization’s objective in all or part of the area”.

Eight recommendations were made in hardware and software management, five of which could be implemented. The remaining three recommendations have not yet been implemented.

A review of debt and income management found pandemic restrictions had a “significant impact” on service.

The report also included the successes of special investigations aimed at combating financial irregularities. Petty cash procedures, card reimbursement processes, ICT access and procurement processes were reviewed throughout the 2021/22 financial year.

The audit said: “Where irregularities were confirmed, prompt action was taken by management (supported by internal audit) to end the potential for ongoing irregularities.

“Causes were then sought and this, as is usually the case in this area of ​​work, tended to highlight the need for enhanced directive control, particularly managerial and supervisory controls.”

The audit committee has also been informed that the draft statement of annual accounts will be delayed.

Several factors have been identified as delaying the process. The domains funded by the Council Books Covid-19 grant would have taken longer than expected to collect due to the volume of transactions.

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Shirlene J. Manley