Council gets ‘best possible’ outcome for managing its finances

Date published: 11 October 2019

West Lindsey District Council’s financial accounts for 2018/19 have been given a clean bill of health by our external auditors, Mazers LLP.

Mazers looked at how well the Council managed its finances and gave it an ‘unqualified opinion’ for its Statement of Accounts.

The report says: “In our opinion the financial statements give a true and fair view of the Council’s financial position as at 31 March 2019 and of its financial performance for the year then ended.”

The audit also gave the Council an ‘unqualified’ opinion for its value for money.  The report stated: “In all significant respects the Council had proper arrangements to ensure it took properly informed decisions and deployed resources to achieve planned and sustainable outcomes for taxpayer and local people.”

Cllr John McNeill, Chairman of the Governance and Audit Committee, was pleased with the positive assessment. He said: “It’s great to be officially recognised by our external auditors for managing public money well.

“This impartial and objective report on our financial performance and accounting for our use of public funds, gives the public an opportunity to learn about how we manage public funds.

“I am delighted to see that the results demonstrate that the Council has put in place proper arrangements to secure economy, efficiency and effectiveness in its use of resources, which I am sure our communities will be pleased to see.”

“These are tough times for Council’s nationally as we balance the budget each year with fewer resources, but I’m happy the auditors acknowledge that we do a good job. I would like to thank all the officers involved especially as we produced the audited accounts much earlier than last year.”

The Governance and Audit Committee is responsible for the following areas:

  • Corporate governance of the council – monitoring the operation of the constitution
  • Accounts and audit – approving the statement of accounts
  • Regulatory framework - monitoring the effective development and operation of risk management
  • Ethics and standards - promote and maintain high standards of conduct by councillors and co-opted members.

The committee’s remit also incorporates the internal audit programme, which changes each year. Cllr McNeill added: “Internal audits are also carried out regularly at the council which is important to ensure we continuously review our governance procedures.”

The full Audited Statement of Accounts can be viewed:

Some of the performance highlights include:

  • Building a new leisure centre in Market Rasen and refurbishment of the West Lindsey Leisure Centre in Gainsborough.
  • Secured a development partner to deliver housing and regeneration
  • Work on a new crematorium has started – due to open in January 2020
  • Distributed £84,299 to support local community groups , which generated £337,747 in external match funding – achieving £4 for every £1 invested
  • New hourly train service Monday to Saturday connecting Gainsborough Central to Retford, Worksop and Sheffield.

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