Agenda item

Closing Certificate for the 19/20 External Audit

Report of Executive Director of Resources, Local Authority Section 151 Officer














































The Head of Strategic Finance, Dave Phillips submitted a report to communicate to the Committee that the Council had now received the external auditor’s opinion and the certificate concluding the 2019/20 external audit.


As reported to the previous meeting, the Audit of the Council’s 2019/20 Statements of Accounts had been ongoing since Summer 2020.  Audit deadlines had been extended and had been delayed due to the pandemic and remote working. 


During the external audit process, the Committee had been kept up to date, and the Council’s external Auditors Ernst and Young (EY) findings had been received and shared with Members throughout the Audit.


The Head of Strategic Finance advised that there had been a number of national reviews around the current challenges to the external audit market, with external auditor’s firms struggling to recruit and retain auditing staff across the country.


The External Auditors were now preparing for this year’s audit.  The statutory deadline to issue the audit opinion was September 2021, but it was expected to be later, but hopefully before 2022.


The Head of Strategic Finance advised that an email had been received by himself and the Section 151 Officer regarding the next external audit appointment from 2023/24, explaining that a consultation was taking place to allow Local Authorities to opt into the next Public Sector Audit Appointments (PSAA) process to appoint auditors via their national procurement exercise. The alternative would be the Council procuring its own external auditors.  A report would be brought to the October 2021 meeting, with further agreement needed at full Council by the end of January 2022.



RESOLVED: - that the Committee notes the successful conclusion of the 2019/20 audit.


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