Article 9 - The Audit and Governance Committee


1               Composition


1.1               The Council will establish the Audit & Governance Committee composed on a proportionate basis.

1.2               The Chair and Vice Chair of the Audit & Governance Committee shall be appointed by Full Council.

1.3              The Membership of the Audit and Governance Committee will not include in its Membership any Member of the Executive or the Lord Mayor.


1.4              Two Independent Persons will be appointed to this Committee to support its work in respect of its governance function only.  Once appointed, an Independent Person will serve a maximum of two 4 year periods of office from date of appointment.  The Independent Person will not be entitled to vote.

1.5               Members of the Audit & Governance Committee will participate in a programme of training relevant to the functions and responsibilities of this Committee.


2               Role and Functions of the Audit and Governance Committee


2.1             The Committee is a key component of the Council’s corporate Governance arrangements. It provides independent assurance on the Council’s arrangements for governance, risk management and internal control and oversees the financial reporting and annual governance processes.


2.2           The Committee will oversee the Council’s arrangements for internal and external audit and assists in ensuring that efficient and effective assurance arrangements are in place.


2.3           The Chair of the Audit & Governance Committee will provide an annual report to Full Council on the work of the Committee.


2.4           The Committee will be responsible for functions set out below:

                 Audit Functions:

a)   Approving the Annual Audit Plan of the Council from both Internal Audit and External Audit;

b)   Monitoring progress against the Annual Audit Plan;

c)   Considering the Head of Internal Audit’s annual report and opinion;

d)   Contributing to the Quality Assurance and Improvement Programme, including the external assessment of internal audit;

e)   Approving the Annual Statement of Accounts;

f)     Considering the Annual Governance Statement and monitoring any necessary actions;

g)   Reviewing the Strategic Risk Register and considering risk management arrangements;

h)   Considering the Council’s Treasury Management activities;

i)     To consider the action plan arising from the Annual Letter of the External Auditor;

j)     To commission work from Internal Audit Service and External Audit with regard to the resources available and existing scope and breadth of their respective work programmes and forward plan for the Committee.


         Governance Functions:

a)   Considering the Annual Review of the Council’s Regulatory Framework (Code of Corporate Governance);

b)   Receiving the Report of the Monitoring Officer;

c)   Consider any relevant issues referred to it by the Chief Operating Officer, the S151 Officer, the Monitoring Officer;  the Head of Internal Audit and any other council body;

d)   Considering the external auditor’s reports and letters addressed to those charged with governance;

e)   Make payments or provide other benefits in cases of maladministration to the extent that such power is not delegated elsewhere in the Council’s scheme of delegation;

f)     Oversight of activity and compliance in respect of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act.


2.5           The Committee will make recommendations to the Council on the exercise of the following functions:


a)   Recommendation that Full Council change the name of the City;

b)   Recommendation that Full Council change the name of a Parish;

c)   Recommendation that Full Council make, amend, revoke or re-enact byelaws to the extent that the power is not delegated to another Committee of Sub Committee;

d)   Recommendation that Full Council promote or oppose local or personal bills;

e)   Recommendation that Full Council fill vacancies in the event of insufficient nominations;

f)     Recommendation that Full Council dissolve small Parish Councils;

g)   Recommendation that Full Council make orders for grouping Parishes, dissolving groups and separating Parishes from groups.

h)   Submit proposals to the Secretary of State for an Order under Section 10 of the Representation of the People Act 2000 (pilot schemes for local elections);

i)     Divide electoral divisions into Polling Districts at local government elections;

j)     Divide constituency into Polling Districts;

k)   Exercise functions in relation to Parishes and Parish Councils under Part II of the Local Government and Rating Act 1997 and subordinate legislation under that Part.


2.6           The Committee will be responsible for the overview and effectiveness of the Confidential Reporting Code and Counter Fraud arrangements and other associated policies and working protocols.


2.7           The Committee will be responsible for the overview and fitness for purpose annual review of the Council’s policy and procedures in so far as they relate to settlement agreements.


2.8           The Committee will advise the Council on the monitoring, amendments to and overall operation of the Constitution including the Council’s Contract Procedure Rules and the Financial Procedure Rules, working protocols and Codes of Conduct.