To receive a verbal update on the following:
· 2019/20 Statement of Accounts
· 2020/21 Statement of Accounts
Francesca Palmer from BDO provided the verbal update on the 2019/20 & 2020/21 Statement of Accounts.
1. BDO are planning to re-start work on the 2019/20 audit next week. Five weeks of regional work had been booked to complete the remaining work, following up issues from the previous audit and also by looking at the HRA and beacons.
2. BDO were expecting Strutt & Parker to provide the beacon information before they started their NHS account work so they could choose samples to give to the Council who would have time to turn those around. This could have been done during the health accounts work and BDO could have had those before the start of the Council audit next week. However, that information has not been received and the audit may be delayed because of that. Hopefully, BDO would be able to turn this round quickly once the 5 weeks of field work is completed.
3. Once the audit file has been through their internal quality review processes and may take a bit more time and potentially raise more questions, they hope to bring the 2019/20 final completion report and sign off the accounts at the September 2021 meeting.
4. In terms of the 2020/21 had asked for an extension from NAO, PSAA & NACLG on the grounds that it would be extremely challenging to meet and deliver the audit report deadline in September 2021. But this was not met, and the vast majority of audits nationally won’t be achieved by that deadline.
BDO staff had been booked to do the 2020/21 audit in September, October and November. BDO would be looking to start the high risks first and do the sampling. BDO would be having regular meetings with the Executive Director Resources and the team for the 2019/20 audit and would be continuing that for the 2020/21 audit, which will be helpful identifying issues.
Detailed discussions took place including the following:
· The 2020/21 draft accounts will be available in August 2021. The deadline is the 1 August 2021 and will be coming to the GPC meeting on the 4 August 2021.
· BDO would not be starting the 2020/21 audit until the 2019/20 accounts field work is finished. Work on the 2019/20 accounts would be restricting work on the 2020/21 audit.
· In response to having the 4 August 2021 GPC committee earlier in July 2021, the Executive Director Resources clarified that the 4 August 21 meeting is designed around the fact that the publication date of the 2019/20 Statement of Accounts is 1 August 2021 and therefore the meeting is held on the next Thursday after 1 August 2021. If a decision is made by the Committee to hold the meeting earlier, there would not be set of accounts for 2019/20 due to required checking time but that didn’t mean the accounts wouldn’t be published on time. There were also a number of other reports going to 4th August 2021 GPC committee meeting. Rather than having a meeting in July and August the team have put them together for the 4 August 2021 GPC committee meeting.
AGREED to note the verbal update from BDO (unanimous).