Agenda and draft minutes

Audit, Governance and Standards Committee - Tuesday, 5th October, 2021 1.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Civic Centre, Stone Cross, Rotary Way, Northallerton, DL6 2UU

Contact: Democratic Services Officer  01609 767015

Note: Press and public are welcome to attend meetings of the Audit, Governance and Standards Committee. Due to current social distancing restrictions, measures have been implemented which limit the number of attendees able to be physically present in the meeting at any one time. Temporary arrangements are in place for members of the press and public to register their attendance no later than 24 hours in advance of the meeting taking place. Spaces are allocated on a first come first served basis. If you arrive at the Civic Centre to attend the meeting and have not registered in advance a space cannot be guaranteed if there are no vacant seats available. Members of the press and public are also able to observe the meeting virtually via Teams. Please click on the link below or dial 020 3855 5195 followed by the Conference ID: 545 958 665# For further information please contact Democratic Services on telephone 01609 767015 or email committeeservices@hambleton.gov.uk 

Media

Items
No. Item

AGS.8

Member Code of Conduct pdf icon PDF 633 KB

Report of the Director of Law and Governance (Monitoring Officer)

Minutes:

The subject of the decision:

 

The Director of Law and Governance (Monitoring Officer) submitted a report seeking consideration of the Local Government Association’s Model Code of Member Conduct and whether to recommend its adoption by the Council.

 

Alternative options considered:

 

The options considered were as set out in the report.

 

The reason for the decision:

 

Under the Localism Act 2011 the Council is required to have a code in place which deals with the expected conduct of its Members with reference to the Seven Principles of Public Life.  The Committee was satisfied that the Council’s current Code of Conduct fulfils that requirement and addresses the recommendations of the Committee on Standards in Public Life.

 

The decision:

 

That the Committee recommends to Council that the current Code of Member Conduct shall remain unchanged.

AGS.9

Annual Review of the Committee's Terms of Reference pdf icon PDF 219 KB

Report of the Interim Director of Finance (s151 Officer)

Minutes:

The subject of the decision:

 

The Interim Director of Finance (s151 Officer) presented a report following a review of the Committee’s Terms of Reference.

 

Alternative options considered:

 

None.

 

The reason for the decision:

 

To fulfil the Audit Commission’s good practice requirement to the annual review and incorporate the audit terms of reference suggested by CIPFA.

 

The decision:

 

That the Committee approves and recommends to Council that:

 

(1)     the annual review of the Audit, Governance and Standards Committee’s terms of reference be noted; and

 

(2)     the terms of reference for the Audit, Governance and Standards Committee as set out in Annex A of the report be approved.

AGS.10

Minutes

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 20 July 2021 (AGS.3 to AGS.7), previously circulated.

Minutes:

The decision:

 

That the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 20 July 2021 (AGS.3 - AGS.7), previously circulated, be signed as a correct record.

AGS.11

Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act - Review of Activity pdf icon PDF 207 KB

Report of the Director of Law and Governance (Monitoring Officer)

Minutes:

The subject of the decision:

 

The Director of Law and Governance (Monitoring Officer) submitted a report advising the Committee that the Council, like many public authorities, was governed by the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA).  This Act ensured that public authorities complied with their obligations under the Human Rights Act when undertaking investigations which might interfere with the rights of individuals.  The Act introduced safeguards on activities such as surveillance undertaken by public bodies.  The Committee had been given responsibility for RIPA matters.  This would involve the Committee reviewing the Council’s Policy Statement from time to time and receiving bi-annual reports on any activities which had been authorised under RIPA.

 

Alternative options considered:

 

None.


The reason for the decision:             

 

To comply with the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA).

 

The decision:

 

That it be noted that no RIPA authorisations were made by the Council during the period 23 March to 5 October 2021.

AGS.12

Annual Review of Risk Management pdf icon PDF 846 KB

Report of the Interim Director of Finance (s151 Officer)

Minutes:

The subject of the decision:

 

The Interim Director of Finance (s151 Officer) presented a report which provided the Committee with an annual review of the Council’s risk management process.

 

The Committee enquired as to whether working from home was included within the corporate health and safety risks. The Committee was advised that there were appropriate policies in place regarding working from home and that the inclusion of this as a corporate risk would be reviewed and updated accordingly.

 

Alternative options considered:

 

None.

 

The reason for the decision:

 

To comply with the Committee’s Terms of Reference as detailed within the Constitution.

 

The decision:

 

That the Committee note the Corporate Risks, the Key Corporate Project Risks and the Service Risks with a net risk threshold of 12 or above attached at Annex A, B and C of the report respectively.

AGS.13

Internal Audit First Progress Report 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 752 KB

Report of the Interim Director of Finance (S151 Officer)

Minutes:

The subject of the decision:

 

The Interim Director of Finance (S151 Officer) presented a report providing an update on audit work planned and undertaken, and counter fraud activity.

 

Alternative options considered:

 

None.

 

The reason for the decision:

 

To take account of the statutory requirement under the Accounts and Audit Regulations 2015.

 

The decision:

 

That the work undertaken by Internal Audit and the Counter Fraud Team in the year to date be noted.

 

Note:     Councillor M S Robson left the meeting at 2.10pm

AGS.14

Counter Fraud Framework Update pdf icon PDF 763 KB

Report of the Interim Director of Finance (S151 Officer)

Minutes:

The subject of the decision:

 

The Interim Director of Finance (s151 Officer) submitted a report which presented a review on the Council’s counter fraud framework, updated the counter fraud strategy action plan, and presented a revised fraud risk assessment.

 

The Committee asked questions regarding whistleblowing which were responded to at the meeting and where further information was requested, it was agreed that this would be provided at the appropriate time.

 

Alternative options considered:

 

None.

 

The reasons for the decision:

 

The Committee was satisfied with progress on the actions set out in the Counter Fraud and Corruption Strategy and the preventative measures introduced within the Counter Fraud Risk Assessment to reduce the risk of fraud.

 

The decision:

 

That the Council’s updated counter fraud framework with associated action plan and the updated Counter Fraud Risk Assessment be noted.