Internal Audit Interim Report April - November 2018
To consider the report of the Head of Finance.
The Head of Finance submitted a report (HF/129/18) which enabled consideration to be given to the Service Manager – Audit and Technical’s Interim Report for April 2018 – November 2018.
The Audit Lead introduced the report and drew attention to the main findings of the audit work undertaken during this period. Fourteen planned audits had been completed during the reporting period, two of which had been given ‘Red/Amber’ levels of assurance. The Executive Summaries from these audits were shown in Appendix A2 to the report. The report also included the counter-fraud work undertaken by Wrexham Internal Audit Services during the reporting period.
During discussion of the report Members raised the following matters in particular:
· It was noted that there continued to be good support from Heads of Departments and, to date, there has been little resistance to audits or recommendations.
· The Service Manager - Audit and Technical confirmed that no unplanned audits had been carried out during the reporting period. The audit of Environmental Improvement Schemes requested by the Head of Housing and Economy will commence soon. During discussion of this item, further information was sought on the type of scheme that could be put forward for consideration under this scheme. The Head of Finance commented that a guidance note was available and that he would circulate a copy to all Members of the Committee.
· A Member referred to the forthcoming proposed changes to the Senior Management Structure and queried whether appropriate governance arrangements would be in place. The Head of Finance commented that the restructure would be limited to the third tier management level and above by the creation of seven Chief Officer roles with some changes to existing portfolios. The governance arrangements for individual sections / teams within departments should not be affected.
· Reference was made to the new reporting structures that will be created by the amalgamation of the existing Children and Adult Social Care Services.
· Para 2.1 – Table 1 - Summary of Completed Audits: A Member commented that combining the number of audits given a Green or Green / Amber level of assurance in the table did not give a true reflection and was an anomaly. During discussion, it was noted that questions could be asked of any audit completed during the reporting period, however, the tendency has been to focus on those audits where Red or Red/Amber levels of assurance have been given as these could cause greatest concern.
· It was further suggested that ‘Levels of Assurance’ in audit reports could be included as a topic for a Member training session.
· Audit Ref. 2018 -007 Out of County Placements : Assurances were sought that the gaps in the process did not undermine the safety and security of vulnerable children.
· Audit Ref 2018 – 051 Facilities Management: The Audit Lead provided further information on this audit.
· Audit Ref 2018 - 009 Elected Members: The Audit Lead provided further information on this audit which had been given a Green/Amber level of assurance.
· Ref 2017 - 030 Occupational Road Risk Policy (ORRP): Concern was expressed on the delay between the audit findings being published (Sept 2017) and undertaking the follow-up audit. The Audit Lead commented that the follow-up audit had been deferred to allow time for the new ORRP to be applied. The findings of the 1st Follow up audit would be reported to the February 2019 Audit Committee.
· The Service Manager – Audit and Technical clarified that the six High Priority recommendations referred to in the report consisted of four in this report and two that had been previously reported to the Audit Committee in September.
· With reference to the counter- fraud work undertaken during the reporting period, the Service Manger – Audit and Technical confirmed that all eight new allegations of fraud related to internal employees.
RESOLVED – That the report be noted and that in future reports the number of Green and Green/Amber audits be shown separately within the table.