Call the Council on 01736 788412
St Just-in-Penwith
Town Council
St Just Town Council Coat of Arms
Caring for your local
communities

Finance and Audit

Annual Governance and Accountability Return 2019/20

“The Town Council has submitted the Annual Return to be independently audited by a professional auditor and these accounting statements are as yet unaudited.

Now audited with External Auditor Report 2019/2020.

Once the external auditor has completed their work, and is able to give an opinion on the limited assurance review, the Annual Governance and Accountability Return will be returned to the authority – no later than 30th September 2020. The Annual Governance and Accountability Return, including the notice of the conclusion of audit and any amendments made to the accounting statements as a result of the limited assurance review, will be available on the Town Council website no later than 30th September 2020 subject to current coronavirus restrictions.”

The Council has suffered severe staffing disruption during what would have been even in normal circumstances a busy year with new services devolved from Cornwall Council. This has led to our review finding that a number of the control objectives were not being achieved throughout the financial year to a standard adequate to meet the needs of the Council. These issues are not systemic and having always be met in previous years the return to normal staffing levels should ensure that all controls are adequately exercised going forward. In short, the council had several Locum clerks covering a long-term sickness of the Clerk/RFO for the first half the year and had no Clerk/RFO for the rest. A lot of good practice and control was lost from July 2019 to March 2020 and have only now be addressed by the appointment of a full time Clerk/RFO on 20 February 20.

Because the internal auditor responded ‘No’ to internal control objective ‘L’ (regarding the period for the exercise of public rights), stating that “The Council did not meet its obligations as it published the incorrect Notice, using the one designed to inform the external auditor of the proposed dates rather than the Statutory Notice,” I will need to raise an ‘except for’ matter (qualification), subject to sign off by an engagement lead. This is because the response to Section 1, Assertion 4 (‘Yes’) is inconsistent with the internal auditor’s findings and should have been ‘No’, given the Council did not meet the requirements of the Accounts and Audit Regulations for the period for the exercise of public rights in 2019/20. The ‘except for’ matter will be as follows: Section 1, Assertion 4 has been incorrectly completed.

Annual Governance and Accountability Return 2018/19

“The Town Council has submitted the Annual Return to be independently audited by a professional auditor and these accounting statements are as yet unaudited.

Once the external auditor has completed their work, and is able to give an opinion on the limited assurance review, the Annual Governance and Accountability Return will be returned to the authority – no later than 30th September 2019. The Annual Governance and Accountability Return, including the notice of the conclusion of audit and any amendments made to the accounting statements as a result of the limited assurance review, will be available on the Town Council website no later than 30th September 2019.”