This report was introduced by the Head of RIAS and its purpose was to provide the Head of Internal Audit’s Annual Opinion on the Council’s control environment in relation to governance, risk management and internal control and to inform the Committee of the work and performance of Internal Audit for the Financial Year 2022-23.
From the work undertaken during the financial year 2022-23 and considering other sources of assurance, the Head of Internal Audit’s annual opinion on the adequacy andeffectiveness of the Council’s framework of governance,risk management and control for 2022-23 is of reasonable
Table 2 of the report illustrated that one audit review identified control issues which meant that only limited assurance could be provided. This was in respect of Abercerdin Primary School, and the reasons are discussed in the report.
A Member drew attention to the section of the report on recommendations, and in particular, one where, having accepted the identified risk, a recommendation had not been accepted. In response to the discussion on this matter, it was agreed that the Chief Officer – Finance, Performance and Change would work with the Head of RIAS on the Council’s escalation process in these circumstances, including the possibility of referring specific matters to the Committee.
In response to a discussion about the training of the regional audit team, the Chairperson suggested it might be useful to have some statistics on what has been undertaken. The Chief Officer – Finance, Performance and Change added that there were modules that were relevant to the work of the Committee, and it could be useful to receive information on those to evaluate any risks that could arise from training.
Another Member drew attention to the issue of reactive work or referrals and the impact it has on planned work. The representatives from RIAS indicated that they built an element of time into the audit plan for such referrals and were willing to amend or reconsider the scope of planned work to accommodate such work. It should be noted that there were only two specific pieces of work that came under that heading last year.
A Lay Member asked about the number of days between draft and final reports being issued. The report indicates that it took 32.5 days, and he wanted to know if that was calendar or working days. The Deputy Head of RIAS explained that it was calendar days but that they were going to change that to working days in the future.
The Chairperson concluded this item by discussing two issues:
Members of the Committee noted and agreed with the Annual Internal Audit Report for the Financial Year 2022-23 including the Head of Internal Audit’s Annual Opinion on the adequacy and effectiveness of the Council’s framework of governance, risk management and internal control.