Your Councillors

AUDIT, GOVERNANCE AND STANDARDS COMMITTEE

18 JANUARY 2016

Is the final decision on the recommendations in this report to be made at this meeting?

Yes

 

Grant Claim Certification

 

Final Decision-Maker

Audit, Governance and Standards Committee

Lead Head of Service

Stephen McGinnes

Lead Officer and Report Author

Stephen McGinnes

Classification

Public

Wards affected

All

 

 

This report makes the following recommendations to this Committee:

1.   That the Committee notes the Grant Thornton assurance that the Council maintains a strong control environment for the preparation and monitoring of grant claims and returns.

 

 

 

This report relates to the following corporate priorities:

 

In maintaining effective financial controls the Council is able to confidently progress itís priorities.

         Keeping Maidstone Borough an attractive place for all -

         Securing a successful economy for Maidstone Borough -

 

 

Timetable

Meeting

Date

Audit, Governance and Standards Committee

18th January 2016



Grant Claim Certification

 

 

1.        PURPOSE OF REPORT AND EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

 

1.1    To consider the outcome of the Grant Thornton work to certify the subsidy claim that the Council submitted during 2014-2015.

 

 

 

2.        INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND

 

2.1     Grant Thornton undertook work to certify the Housing Benefit grant claim that was submitted by the Council with a value of £46.6 million, with the process completed in advance of the 30th November deadline set by the Department for Work and Pensions.

 

2.2     The level and form of testing reflect the value and specific requirements of the grant paying body, as detailed within Appendix A.

 

2.3     Whilst the work gave rise to minor amendments (99.96% accuracy) the overall assurance confirmed that the Council continues to have good systems in place to ensure the accuracy of its grant claim.

 

 

 

3.        PREFERRED OPTION AND REASONS FOR RECOMMENDATIONS

 

3.1     Report is provided for information only.

 

 

4.       CONSULTATION RESULTS AND PREVIOUS COMMITTEE FEEDBACK

 

4.1     Report is provided for information only.

 

 

 

5.       CROSS-CUTTING ISSUES AND IMPLICATIONS

 

 

Issue

Implications

Sign-off

Impact on Corporate Priorities

In maintaining effective financial controls the Council is able to confidently progress its priorities.

Head of Revenues and Benefits

Risk Management

Certification provides external assurance to the Council on the effectiveness of its controls around accurate payment and recording of benefit expenditure.

Head of Audit Service

Financial

The financial considerations have been outlined within the body of the report and attached appendices.

Section 151 Officer

Staffing

No impact.

Head of Revenues & Benefits

Legal

No impact.

Deputy Head of Legal Partnership

Equality Impact Needs Assessment

No impact.

Head of Revenues & Benefits

Environmental/Sustainable Development

No impact.

Head of Revenues & Benefits

Community Safety

No impact.

Head of Revenues & Benefits

Human Rights Act

No impact.

Head of Revenues & Benefits

Procurement

No impact.

Head of Revenues & Benefits

Asset Management

No impact.

Head of Revenues & Benefits

 

6.        REPORT APPENDICES

 

The following documents are to be published with this report and form part of the report:

         Appendix I: Grant Thornton Certification letter

 

 

7.        BACKGROUND PAPERS

 

None