To receive a report from the Acting Executive Director Resources presenting the Statement of Accounts Closedown Update.
RECEIVED a report on the Action Plan for the Statement of Accounts from Fay Hammond (Acting Executive Director of Resources).
1. To provide the committee an update on some events that had happened earlier in the week. Both items 4 and 5 would be heard together starting with item 5.
2. Finance were on track to meet the 31 May 2020 deadline, however, events this week may have put that at risk and presently Finance are investigating what their options are and are also talking to BDO about what that might look like.
3. As reported, the finance team had employed 2 interims to work on the Asset Register and the Statement of Accounts, respectively. Both interims had now left the council, one at Christmas 2019 and the other left this week after giving notice. Both were working on the asset register, valuations and production of the statement of accounts under the guidance of the Head of Corporate Finance. Finance will now need to identify other interims’ in a difficult market.
4. The other event that happened, which compounds this issue, concerns the asset register and valuations, a key part of the process. Of the 4 required valuations, only 2 had arrived on-time and 2 had not.
5. What should have happened is that by 19 February 2020, finance should have had all 4 valuations for officers to check and review so that BDO could audit them as part of the interim audit. Significant pressure had been applied to the contractors, providing the valuations, for the 19 February 2020 deadline by finance officers and other officers in the council who have other contracting arrangements with them.
6. The finance team were intending to still hit some of the interim audit deadlines, by doubling up with the remaining interim and the Head of Corporate Finance. However, with the final interim leaving, finance did not have that position.
7. Finance will be looking for another interim as soon as possible, to get the correct person. However, this has had an impact on officers’ timetable including BDO’s planning in terms of inability now to do some testing on the interim audit.
8. Finance’s plan is to work over the next week on what the options are, looking at the timetable and how that can be done. Explore what is in the market as regards interim’s and then through Councillor Maguire (Cabinet Member for Finance & Procurement). Fay Hammond would then update the Committee on progress of that by next week. At the time of producing this report, these issues had not happened.
ACTION – Fay Hammond (Acting Executive Director Resources)
AGREED to note the Statement of Accounts update and planned further improvements.
To receive a report from BDO (External Auditors) presenting the 2019/20 Pension Fund Audit Plan.
RECEIVED from BDO (external auditors) the London Borough of Enfield Pension Audit Plan 2019/20.
1. This was a similar document to the main council audit plan except that BDO does not have use of resources responsibilities, in respect of pension monies, is solely to do with the accountancy position.
2. The Audit Risks Overview, as detailed at pages 46 and 51.
3. BDO tended to deliver both the council audit plan and the pension fund audit plan at the same time and present their results and opinion at the same time. However, BDO have to regard them as separate entities for audit planning purposes.
AGREED to note the Pension Fund Audit Plan 2019/20.