The Clerk to the Parish Council is also the Responsible Financial Officer.
The Parish Council adopts its Financial Regulations and a range of policies and statements at its Annual Meeting, which are in place to ensure that the Council acts within the relevant laws and statutes.
The financial year commences on 1st April to conclude on 31st March.
From around October, the Finance & Audit Committee commences a budget process. This will establish the level of funding the Members of the Council believe is needed to run the Authority and to achieve the aims and objectives of its Parish Strategy for the following financial year.
Within the budget considerations, an element of proposed income is included. The final budget document identifies the level of precept that will be requested from the residents of the Parish. This is collected, on behalf of the Parish Council, by Telford & Wrekin Council, as part of the Council Tax.
Telford & Wrekin Council pays this to the Parish in two equal payments in April and October.
Throughout the year, the Finance & Audit Committee carry out a range of audit functions. These assist in monitoring and evaluating the work of the Parish Council. Regular financial reports are presented to Councillors to enable them to complete their Internal Audit role.
As part of our Openness and Transparency Policy, our payment lists, for expenditure over £500, are available on the website. Full monthly payment lists are available on request.
Within the terms of our Audit Regime, we employ the services of an Internal Audit Company which is appointed at the Annual Meeting. This company can visit at any time during the year to undertake checks. At the end of the financial year, they complete the full audit in accordance with the requirements of the District Auditor.
The Annual Governance and Accountability Return (AGAR) comprises of the
- Annual Internal Audit Report
- Annual Governance Statement and
- Accounting Statements
These are forwarded to the External Auditor and a Certificate is produced which is the final element of the AGAR. This has to be presented to Full Council for completeness and may include recommendations which have to be approved and acted upon.