Agenda

Audit & Governance Committee - Wednesday, 23 November 2022 2.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber - County Hall, New Road, Oxford OX1 1ND. View directions

Contact: Committee Services  Email:  committees.democraticservices@oxfordshire.gov.uk

Link: video link https://oxon.cc/AG23112022

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for Absence and Temporary Appointments

2.

Declaration of Interests - see guidance note

3.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 235 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 21 September 2022 and to receive information arising from them.

4.

Petitions and Public Address

Members of the public who wish to speak at this meeting can attend the meeting in person or ‘virtually’ through an online connection. To facilitate ‘hybrid’ meetings we are asking that requests to speak are submitted by no later than 9am four working days before the meeting i.e., 9am on Thursday 17 November 2022. Requests to speak should be sent to jonathan.deacon@oxfordshire.gov.uk. If you are speaking ‘virtually’, you may submit a written statement of your presentation to ensure that if the technology fails, then your views can still be taken into account. A written copy of your statement can be provided no later than 9am 2 working days before the meeting. Written submissions should be no longer than 1 A4 sheet.

5.

Draft Statement of Accounts 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 99 KB

Report by the Director of Finance.

 

This report summarises the status of the audit of the 2021/22 Statement of Accounts and provides the latest position on the Infrastructure Asset issue impacting on both the 2020/21 and the 2021/22 accounts.

 

The Committee is RECOMMENDED to note the current status of the Statement of Accounts for both 2020/21 and 2021/22.

6.

Annual Governance Statement 2021/22 Update pdf icon PDF 255 KB

Report by the Director of Law & Governance and Monitoring Officer.

 

On 20 July 2022, the Committee approved the Annual Governance Statement (AGS) for the year 2021/22. Local authorities are required to prepare an AGS to be transparent about their compliance with good governance principles and to give an opinion on the effectiveness of those arrangements. As part of the process, authorities are expected to highlight particular areas of focus for the yearfollowing.  The report updates the Committee on the eight particular areas of focus identified for 2022/23.

 

The Committee is RECOMMENDED to receive the update on theactions from the Annual Governance Statement 2021/22 and to make any comment upon them.

7.

Annual Whistleblowing Report pdf icon PDF 206 KB

Report by the Director of Law & Governance and Monitoring Officer.

 

A revised Whistleblowing Policy was presented to the Audit and Governance Committee on 17 November 2021.  The revised policy draws from best practice elsewhere and benefited from prior consideration by the Audit Working Group.  It focuses primarily on employees, councillors and contractors.  A copy of the policy is attached to the report.

 

The Committee is RECOMMENDED to note the number of incidents of Whistleblowing during the 2021-22 financial year.  The nine whistleblowing incidents are recorded in the report.

Additional documents:

8.

Counter Fraud Plan - Progress Report pdf icon PDF 230 KB

Report by the Director of Finance.

 

This report presents a summary of activity against the Counter Fraud Plan for 2022/23, presented to the July 2022 Audit & Governance committee meeting.  The Counter Fraud plan supports the Council’s Anti-Fraud and Corruption Strategy by ensuring that the Council has proportionate and effective resources and controls in place to prevent and detect fraud as well as investigate those matters that do arise.

 

The Committee is RECOMMENDED to note the summary of activity against the Counter Fraud Plan for 2022/23.

9.

Audit Working Group update - 9 November 2022 meeting pdf icon PDF 101 KB

Report by the Director of Finance.

 

This report sets out the matters considered by the Audit Working Group at the meeting held on 9 November 2022.

 

The Committee is RECOMMENDED to note the report.

10.

Treasury Management Midterm Review 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 502 KB

Report by the Director of Finance.

 

The report covers the treasury management activity for the first half of 2022/23 in compliance with the CIPFA Code of Practice on Treasury Management 2021.  It provides an update on the anticipated position and prudential indicators set out in the Treasury Management Strategy Statement & Annual Investment Strategy for 2022/23 agreed as part of the council’s budget and Medium Term Financial Strategy in February 2022

 

The Committee is RECOMMENDED to note the report, and to RECOMMEND Council to note the council’s treasury management activity the first half of 2022/23.

11.

Ernst & Young Update

A verbal update from the representatives of the external auditors, Ernst & Young.

12.

Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service Statement of Assurance 2021-22 pdf icon PDF 233 KB

Report by the Deputy Chief Fire Officer.

 

The Fire and Rescue National Framework for England 2018 sets out a requirement for all fire and rescue authorities to provide annual assurance on financial, governance and operational matters through publishing an Annual Statement of Assurance. It covers activities across the Service including Fire and Rescue response, Road Safety, Emergency Planning, and Trading Standards.

 

The Committee is RECOMMENDED to consider and approve the Community Safety Services Statement of Assurance 2021/22 document for publication.

Additional documents:

13.

Community Safety Services Annual Report 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 229 KB

Report by the Deputy Chief Fire Officer.

 

The Community Safety Services, Annual Report is a public facing document detailing performance across the directorate’s strategic priorities between 2021 and 2022. The report details how Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service met its responsibilities to protect communities, reduce harm and save lives. It covers activities across the Service including Fire and Rescue response, Road Safety, Emergency Planning, Gypsy and Traveller Services and Trading Standards.

 

The Committee is RECOMMENDED to consider and approve the Community Safety Services Annual Report 2021/22 for publication.

Additional documents:

14.

Committee's Work Programme 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 185 KB

To review the Committee’s Work Programme.

Close of meeting