This page contains a brief summary of the Financial Regulations. A full copy may be obtained from the Clerk.
The current set of Financial Regulations was adopted by the Council at its meeting held on 11th November 2015.
These financial regulations govern the conduct of financial management by the Council and may only be amended or varied by resolution of the Council. It is the duty of the Council to review the Financial Regulations of the Council from time to time. The Clerk shall make arrangements to monitor changes in legislation or proper practices and shall advise the council of any requirement for a consequential amendment to these financial regulations.
THE RESPONSIBLE FINANCIAL OFFICER (RFO)
The RFO is a statutory office and shall be appointed by the council. The Clerk has been appointed as the RFO for this council and acts under the policy direction of the Council to carry out the following duties:
To administer the Council’s financial affairs in accordance with proper practices;
Determine on behalf of the council its accounting records, and accounting control systems;
Ensure that the accounting control systems are observed and that the accounting records of the council are maintained and kept up to date in accordance with proper practices;
To produce financial management information as required by the council.
At least once a year, prior to approving the annual return, the council shall conduct a review of the effectiveness of its system of internal control which shall be in accordance with proper practices.
Detailed estimates of all receipts and payments including the use of reserves and all sources of funding for the year shall be prepared by the RFO in the form of a budget for consideration by the Council.
The Council shall review the budget not later than the end of December each year and shall fix the Precept to be levied for the ensuing financial year. The RFO shall issue the precept to the billing authority and shall supply each member with a copy of the approved budget. The annual budgets shall form the basis of financial control for the ensuing year.
Expenditure on revenue items may be incurred up to the amounts included for that class of expenditure in the approved budget. No expenditure may be incurred that will exceed the amount provided in the revenue budget for that class of expenditure. During the budget year and with the approval of council having considered fully the implications for public services, unspent and available amounts may be allocated to other budget headings or to an earmarked reserve as appropriate.
The RFO shall regularly provide the Council with a statement of receipts and payments to date under each head of the budgets, comparing actual expenditure to the appropriate date against that planned as shown in the budget. These statements are to be prepared at the end of each month prior to and for presentation at the next Council meeting.
The Clerk may incur expenditure on behalf of the Council which is necessary to carry out any repair, replacement or other work that is of such extreme urgency that it must be done at once, whether or not there is any budgetary provision for the expenditure, subject to a limit of £250. The Clerk shall report the action to the Council as soon as practicable thereafter.
Unspent provisions in the revenue budget shall not be carried forward to a subsequent year unless placed in an earmarked reserve by resolution of the council.
No expenditure shall be incurred in relation to any capital project and no contract entered into or tender accepted involving capital expenditure unless the Council is satisfied that the necessary funds are available, or the requisite borrowing approval has been obtained. All capital works shall be administered in accordance with the Council’s Standing Orders and Financial Regulations relating to contracts.
All accounting procedures and financial records of the Council shall be determined by the RFO in accordance with the Accounts and Audit Regulations.
The RFO shall complete the annual financial statements of the Council, including the Council’s Annual Return, as soon as practicable after the end of the financial year and shall submit them and report thereon to the Council.
The RFO shall complete the Accounts of the Council contained in the Annual Return (as supplied by the Auditor appointed from time to time by the Audit Commission) and shall submit the Annual Return for approval and authorisation by the Council within the timescales set by the Accounts and Audit Regulations.
The RFO shall ensure that there is adequate and effective system of internal audit of the Council’s accounting, financial and other operations in accordance with proper practices. Any officer or member of the Council shall, if the RFO or Internal Auditor requires, make available such documents of the Council which appear to the RFO or Internal Auditor to be necessary for the purpose of the internal audit and shall supply the RFO or Internal Auditor with such information and explanation as the RFO or Internal Auditor considers necessary for that purpose.
The Internal Auditor shall be appointed by and shall carry out the work required by the council in accordance with proper practices. The Internal Auditor, who shall be competent and independent of the operations of the Council, shall report to Council in writing, or in person, on a regular basis with a minimum of one annual written report in respect of each financial year. In order to demonstrate objectivity and independence, the Internal Auditor shall be free from any conflicts of interest and have no involvement in the financial decision making, management or control of the council.
The RFO shall make arrangements for the opportunity for inspection of the accounts, books, and vouchers and for the display or publication of any Notices and statements of account required by the Audit Commission Act 1998 and the Accounts and Audit Regulations.
The RFO shall, as soon as practicable, bring to the attention of all councillors any correspondence or report from the Internal or External Auditor, unless the correspondence is of a purely administrative matter.
There are further detailed regulations covering the following subjects.
Banking Arrangements and Cheques
Payment of Accounts
Payment of Salaries
Loans & Investments
Orders for Work, Goods & Services
Payments under Contracts
Assets, Properties & Estates