EASTVILLE, MIDVILLE AND NEW
GROUP PARISH COUNCIL
It is the responsibility of Eastville, Midville and New Leake Group Parish Council to provide services for, and manage and maintain the assets of, the villages of Eastville, Midville and New Leake, within the law, and the resources provided by the annual precept and other incomes, taking into account the wishes of the residents and obtaining value for money.
Area and Aim
Recommendations to minimise risk.† The aim is for all recommendations to be in place by April 2006
1. To identify, value and maintain all the assets of the Parish Council and ensure that asset and investment registers are complete, accurate and properly maintained
1.† Lack of knowledge of assets of Parish Council
2.† Assets lost or misappropriated
3.† Inadequate or inaccurate valuation f the councilís assets
4.† Asset register not established or inadequately maintained
1.† Ascertain and record all assets for which Eastville, Midville and New Leake Parish Council are responsible and create a permanent asset register.
2.† Appoint a councillor responsible for regular monitoring of location and use of assets.
3.† Arrange a periodic review of valuations including a professional valuation where necessary.† Internal audit checks.
4.† Create asset register in accordance with Audit Commission requirements.
2† Health and safety liability
1. To carry out adequate safety checks on all buildings, properties, and equipment for which the council is responsible
2† To ensure that the clerk can work safely from home particularly with regard to working with computers for long hours and allowing members of the public into the home
3.† To ensure the smooth and continuous running of the Parish Council at all times
1a† Lack of information of properties, buildings and equipment.
1b† Lack of knowledge of safety requirements.
1c† Lack of commitment to carrying out safety checks
2a† Lack of knowledge of safety requirements
2b †Lack of commitment to safety
3a† The clerk is on holiday or in hospital for a period of more than 4 weeks
3b† The clerk is unable to carry out her duties due to death, permanent ill health or resignation
3d† Irreversible computer breakdown
1a† Ensure that all current legislation and advice is held by clerk.† Include in asset register all properties for which Parish Council is responsible.
1b† Ensure that all current legislation and advice is held by clerk.† Place subject as item on Parish Council meeting agenda at regular intervals.
1c† As at 1b above.† Delegate responsibility for particular properties to individual councillors.
2a† Ensure that current advice on using computers and VDUs are adhered to paying particular attention to the length of time spent at the computer at each session.
2b† If a member of the public requests to view information this should only be done the in the clerkís home if she is quite happy with this arrangement and ideally she would be accompanied by a councillor.† Otherwise all viewing should take place in the village hall again with a councillor present.
3a† The clerk to hold a diary detailing all the regular events throughout the year such as insurance renewals, budget dates etc and ensure that a councillor is appointed to take over the duties of the clerk. The clerk to keep a back-up copy of important information on two sets of floppy disc, one of which must be kept in a separate building or given to a nominated councillor and updated after each meeting.
3b† as 3a above.
3c† as 3a above
3d† as 3a above
3† Public liability
1† To ensure that all councillors are aware of their responsibilities, and possible liabilities, and to provide adequate insurance cover for all possible risks.
1a† Lack of knowledge of possible culpability of councillors.
1b† Lack of education of Councillors regarding culpability.
1c† Inadequate insurance cover taken out Ė property, personal liability, employers liability.
1a† Creation of standing orders and familiarisation with those where greatest risk occurs.
1b† As at 1a above.† Attend any training courses available.
1c† Review risk assessment by including on agenda of Parish council meetings at least annually.† Insurance requirements to be reviewed annually.
4† Best Value
1† To form a partnership with other council and government organisations in order to achieve adequate two way communications and influence.
1a† Lack of effective lines of communication with other organisations
1b† Lack of effective lines of communication with parishioners.
1c† Lack of preparation subjects requiring influence
1d† Lack of confidence by Parish Councillors
1a Note all communication lines which are essential or beneficial and make information available to all councillors.† Establish contact by name and where possible face-to-face.
1b Take every opportunity to publicise role of Parish Council.† Look at creating a Parish newsletter.† Use notice boards effectively.† Use key issues to raise profile of Parish Council and to test parishioners view.† Add social event to occasional meeting.† Create annual Parish Council plan and put to parishioners for comment.
1c Ensure all councillors are aware of the need for careful research and are guided as to where to obtain relevant information on issues under discussion.
1d† As at 1a above.† Experienced councillors should assist newcomers to establish essential contacts.† Delegate responsibility for specific contacts to individual councillors.
1. To ensure that salaries are paid to employees and amounts paid to contractors are paid in accordance with council regulations, and adequately monitored.
2. To ensure that year end accounts are prepared on the correct accounting basis, on time, and supported by an adequate audit trail.
3. To ensure that the annual precept requirements results from an adequate budgetary process; progress against the budget is regularly monitored; and reserves are appropriate
4† To explore all possible sources of income, and to ensure that expected income is fully received
5† To keep appropriate books of account accurately and up-to-date throughout the financial year
6† To ensure that payments made from council funds and the use of assets represent value for money, are adequate managed, and comply generally with the wishes of the residents.
1a† Inappropriate rate of pay to employees
1b† Tax and NI arrangements not in accordance with regulations.
1c† Amounts paid to contractors not in accordance with contract and inadequately monitored
2a† Lack of knowledge of Council regulations and procedures.
2b† Late or non-submission of annual accounts.
2c† Year end accounts not prepared inaccurate, or not in accordance with Council requirements.
2d† Inadequate audit trail from records to final accounts.
3a† Lack of knowledge of budgetary process, and Council regulations.
3b† Lack of commitment to budgetary process
3c† Inadequate consideration of requirements for annual precept
3d† Calculation not in accordance with Council regulations
3e† Inadequate internal control with regard to monitoring expenditure
3f† Reserves too low
4a† Lack of knowledge of possible sources of income eg. grants.
4b† Lack of commitment to pursue possible sources of income
4c† Receipts not banked or not banked promptly
4d† Debts not pursued promptly
4e† VAT claims not made promptly or made incorrectly
5a† Lack of knowledge of accounting requirements
5b† Lack of commitment to accounting requirements
5c† Bank charges unnecessarily incurred
5d† Failures and inaccuracies in recording amounts, totals in books of account, and bank reconciliations.
5e† Inaccuracies and interest losses caused by account transfers.
5f† The most beneficial interest terms not being employed.
5g† Inadequate control of cash receipts and payments
5h† Books of account not kept up to date/invoices not posted promptly
5j† Internal controls not in place or not operated.
5j† Payments missed or delayed due to inadequate filing of invoices
5k† Clerk taken ill or leaves without replacement
6a.† Lack of knowledge of wishes of residents
6b Use of funds not giving value for money
6c† Use of funds not in accordance with the wishes of the residents
6d† Charges for use of facilities inadequate
6e† Fund raising not properly controlled or not in accordance with regulations
1a† Ensure employee regulations are available and understood by clerk and internal audit checks are carried out.
1b† As 1a above
1c† Internal audit checks and appoint councillor to monitor contract work carried out.
2a† Include financial regulation in Standing Orders and attend training seminar where available.
2b† Request notification from RFO that accounts have been submitted in accordance with audit requirements.
2c† Internal audit checks and checks by RFO.
2d† As 2c above.
3a† Ensure all Councillors have a copy of the Financial Regulations and place item on agenda early in year to remind councillors of budget process and actions required.
3b† as 3a above.† Involve all councillors in budgetary process not solely the clerk.
3c† Place item on agenda early in year to remind councillors of budget process and actions required.† Start consideration of calculation at least 4 months prior to submission date.† Create annual and 2/3 year plans to assist in process.
3d† Checks by RFO and Internal Auditor
3e† Checks by RFO and internal auditor.† Financial and budget progress reports to all PC meetings.
3f† As at 3e above.
4a† Appoint a Councillor as Grants Officer to gain experience for all grants available and application procedures.
4b† As at 4a.
4c† Regular checks by RFO and Internal audit checks
4d† As at 4c above.
4e† Ensure clerk has appropriate and up-to-date VAT official publications.† Internal Audit checks.
5a† Ensure all councillors are familiar with current financial regulations and include them in standing orders.† Regularly review standing orders.
5b† As 5a above.† RFO to produce financial reports at all meetings.† Annual internal audit reports to be made available to all councillors and any recommendations to be acted upon promptly.
5c† RFO to carry out regular inspection of books of account.† Internal audit to be undertaken periodically during current financial year.
5d† RFO to ensure books of account are formatted in such a way that internal controls are included and activated.† Regular internal audits to advise on internal controls required.
5e† Keep number of accounts to a minimum but ensure that any large credit balances are deposited in an interest bearing account.
5f† Ensure that favourable interest rate is obtained in deposit accounts and review against alternatives but bearing in mind the risks in changing accounts.
5g† Avoid cash payments and receipts if possible.† Where cash payments and receipts are unavoidable use a properly controlled petty cash account with a set maximum balance.
5h† Regular checks by RFO and internal auditor.† Financial reports at all Parish Council meetings.
5j† As at 5h above.
5j† As at 5h above.
5k† Appoint a councillor as RFO to be familiar with all aspects of financial matters.† Keep a diary listing dates and details of items requiring attention.
6a† Take every opportunity to publicise the role of the Parish Council, create Parish newsletter, make effective use of notice boards, raise profile of Parish Council, organise social events create annual Parish plan and put to parishioners for comment.† Ensure residents are consulted on all major financial issues.
6b† Effective budget planning processes.† Creation of annual plan after consultation process.†† Creation of outline 2/3 year plan.
6c† As 6b above.† Internal audit checks.
6d† Effective financial management by RFO and internal audit checks
6e† All councillors to be aware of need to check regulations before commencing fund-raising activities.† Effective financial management by RFO.
6† Member liability
1† To ensure that all councillors are aware of their responsibilities and possible liabilities
1a† Failure to declare interests
1b† Failure to declare receipt of gifts etc.
1a† Ensure that this item is placed on every agenda.† Ensure all councillors are aware of the implications of not declaring interests
1b† Ensure Councillors are aware of the regulations governing the receipts of gifts etc.
7† Employer liability
1† To ensure that all councillors are aware of their responsibilities and possible liabilities
1a† Failure to act within the law.
1a† Ensure all councillors are aware of the Code of Conduct, Standing Orders and relative Acts.† Ensure they comply with employment law and issue and work within contracts of employment. Evaluate Health and Safety issues.
8† Legal liability
1. To ensure compliance with the Acts of Parliament, Councilís financial regulations and code of conduct
2† To comply with appropriate Government legislation regarding disability, racial equality, safeguarding children etc.
1a† Lack of knowledge of regulations and codes.
1b† Absence of standing orders
1c† Actions by the Parish Council outside its powers laid down by Parliament.
1d† Lack of commitment to regulations and procedures
1e† Items purchased without proper tendering procedures, resulting in accusations of commercial favouritism.
1f† Payments made without prior approval and adequate control.
1g† Lack of control of signatories to cheques.
1h VAT not properly accounted for, resulting in overclaims and large demands from Customs and Excise
2a† Lack of knowledge of applicable legislation
2b† Lack of public awareness of applicable legislation.
2c† Failure to comply with applicable legislation
1a Ensure that all Councillors have copies of relative Acts, Code of Conduct, and Standing Orders.† Highlight essential parts and provide training where possible.
1b Ensure that Standing Orders are produced, understood by councillors, and reviewed at least once per year.
1c As at 1a above but ensure that powers are highlighted or extracted into effective summary.
1d Regular reference to appropriate regulations in agenda items.
1e Ensure all councillors are aware of regulations re estimates and full tender procedures.† Introduce practice of estimates for all purchases over an agreed figure.
1f† Ensure all payments are approved in Council meetings and recorded in minutes.† Keep cash payments to a minimum and avoid if possible.
1g† Keep authorised signatories to a minimum consistent with practicalities.
1h† Ensure appropriate publications held and that clerk has good knowledge of regulations
2a† Clerk to have all appropriate legislation available.† Review liabilities and responsibilities periodically at Parish Council meetings.
2b† Include, as appropriate, in any public consultation.
2c† As at 2a above.
9† Objectives of PC
1† To identify and regularly review the Councilís priorities
1a† Lack of knowledge of how to set objectives, set priorities, and identify risks to their achievement
1b† Lack of commitment by council members
1c† No risk analysis carried out
1d† No steps taken to combat identified risks.
1a† All councillors to be made aware of need for objections and identification of risk.
1b† Add risk assessment to agenda annually reviewing particular items and results against those items.
1c† As 1a above.† Ensure that completion of the risk assessment is given high priority as a requirement of the Audit Commission.
1d† As at 1b above.