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Declarations of Interest
Please note that, in accordance with the Members' Code of Conduct, when declaring interests members must disclose the existence and nature of the interest, and whether it is a disclosable pecuniary interest (DPI) or personal and/or pecuniary.
No declarations of interest were received.
Melanie Holland, Housing Strategy and Investment Manager:
a. asked that the Audit Committee agreed to the appointing of the Council’s external auditor, Mazars, to undertake the 2021 Homes England Compliance Audit
b. highlighted that the Council was currently under contract with Homes England (HE) to deliver several schemes.; the annual Compliance Audit Programme provided assurance that the Council had met all of HE’s requirements and funding conditions; and had properly exercised its responsibilities as set out in HE’s Capital Funding Guide
c. explained that the Council was required to appoint an independent auditor to undertake a Compliance Audit
d. invited committees’ questions and comments
Question: Members asked whether we were happy to appoint Mazars as there had previously been issues whilst using them.
Response: The compliance audit was very straightforward and had no problems last year. There had been issues over the years, but compliance audits were procedural and Mazars would be more than capable.
Question: Members asked how the care packages that needed to be given to rough sleepers were funded?
Response: There was funding for two members of staff which had been sought via revenue funding from MHCLG and through housing benefit.
Question: Members asked whether the cost of the auditors was funded via the general account or housing revenue account?
Response: This was funded from the HRA as it was not cost effective to use the General Fund and it was considered acceptable to provide this form of accommodation within the HRA.
RESOLVED that the request for the Council to appoint Mazars to undertake the Homes England Compliance Audit be agreed.