To provide the Council with an Annual Report and Opinion for 2019/20, drawing upon the outcomes of Internal Audit work performed over the course of the year. The report also concludes on the Effectiveness of Internal Audit (report of the Head of Internal Audit enclosed).
Consideration was given to the report of the Head of Internal Audit which provided an Annual Report and Opinion for 2019/20, drawing upon the outcomes of Internal Audit work performed over the course of the year, and concluded on the Effectiveness of Internal Audit.
In line with the Public Sector Internal Audit Standards (PSIAS), which came into force from 1 April 2013, an annual opinion should be generated which concluded on the overall adequacy and effectiveness of the organisation’s framework of governance, risk management and control:
· A summary of the work which supported the opinion should be submitted;
· Reliance placed on other assurance providers should be recognised;
· Any qualifications to that opinion, together with the reason for qualification must be provided;
· There should be disclosure of any impairments or restriction to the scope of the opinion;
· There should be a comparison of actual audit work undertaken with planned work;
· The performance of internal audit against its performance measures and targets should be summarised; and
· Any other issues considered relevant to the Annual Governance Statement should be recorded.
The report also contained conclusions on the Review of the Effectiveness of Internal Audit, which included:
· The degree of conformance with the PSIAS and the results of any quality assurance and improvement programme;
· The outcomes of the performance indicators; and
· The degree of compliance with CIPFA’s Statement on the Role of the Head of Internal Audit.
The following points were highlighted:
· The overall opinion in relation to the framework of governance, risk management and control at South Holland District Council was Reasonable – this was a positive opinion.
· During 2019/20, a total of 18 internal audit reviews had been completed – 13 with a Reasonable grading, 2 with Substantial assurance and 2 with Limited assurance. A No Assurance grading had been given to Private Sector Housing however, it was encouraging that many of the original recommendations had been addressed
· As discussed at the previous item, there were some urgent and historical recommendations that had to be addressed
· Issues for inclusion within the Annual Governance Statement were detailed within the report.
Members thanked the Audit Manager for the clarity of the information provided within the report.
a) That the contents of the Annual Report and Opinion of the Head of Internal Audit be received and approved;
b) That it be noted that a Reasonable audit opinion had been given in relation to governance, risk management and control for the year ended 31 March 2020;
c) That it be noted that the opinions expressed together with significant matters arising from internal audit work and contained within the report should be given due consideration, when developing and reviewing the Council’s Annual Governance Statement for 2019/20; and
d) That the conclusions of the Review of the Effectiveness of Internal Audit be noted.