Certificate of Exemption – AGAR 2019/20 Part 2

To be completed by smaller authorities where the higher of gross income or gross expenditure did not exceed £25,000 in the year of account ended 31 March 2020, and that wish to certify themselves as exempt from a limited assurance review under Section 9 of the Local Audit (Smaller Authorities) Regulations 2015

There is no requirement to have a limited assurance review or to submit an Annual Governance and Accountability Return to the external auditor, provided that the authority has certified itself as exempt at a meeting of the authority after 31 March 2020 and a completed Certificate of Exemption is submitted no later than 30 June 2020 notifying the external auditor.

LONGSDON PARISH COUNCIL

certifies that during the financial year 2019/20, the higher of the authority’s total gross income for the year or total gross annual expenditure, for the year did not exceed £25,000

Total annual gross income for the authority 2019/20:  £4,829
Total annual gross expenditure for the authority 2019/20:  £7,836

There are certain circumstances in which an authority will be unable to certify itself as exempt, so that a limited assurance review will still be required. If an authority is unable to confirm the statements below then it cannot certify itself as exempt and it must submit the completed Annual Governance and Accountability Return Part 3 to the external auditor to undertake a limited assurance review for which a fee of £200 +VAT will be payable.

By signing this Certificate of Exemption you are confirming that:

  • The authority was in existence on 1st April 2016
  • In relation to the preceding financial year (2018/19), the external auditor has not:
    • issued a public interest report in respect of the authority or any entity connected with it
    • made a statutory recommendation to the authority, relating to the authority or any entity connected with it
    • issued an advisory notice under paragraph 1(1) of Schedule 8 to the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014 (“the Act”), and has not withdrawn the notice
    • commenced judicial review proceedings under section 31(1) of the Act
    • made an application under section 28(1) of the Act for a declaration that an item of account is unlawful, and the application has not been withdrawn nor has the court refused to make the declaration
  • The court has not declared an item of account unlawful after a person made an appeal under section 28(3) of the Act.

If you are able to confirm that the above statements apply and that the authority neither received gross income, nor incurred gross expenditure, exceeding £25,000, then the Certificate of Exemption can be signed and a copy submitted to the external auditor either by email or by post (not both).

The Annual Internal Audit Report, Annual Governance Statement, Accounting Statements, an analysis of variances and the bank reconciliation plus the information required by Regulation 15 (2), Accounts and Audit Regulations 2015 including the period for the exercise of public rights still need to be fully completed and, along with a copy of this certificate, published on a public website* before 1 July 2020. By signing this certificate you are also confirming that you are aware of this requirement.

Signed by the Responsible Financial Officer  Date
Clerk's Digital Signature 27/08/2020 
Signed by Chairman  Date
Chair's Digital Signature 27/08/2020 
I confirm that this Certificate of
Exemption was approved by this
authority on this date:
27/08/2020 
as recorded in minute reference:  
08/20 (d)
Email of Authority
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
*Published web address
www.longsdonpc.org.uk
Telephone number
01782 502940
 
 

ONLY this Certificate of Exemption should be returned EITHER by email OR by post (not both) as soon as possible after certification to your external auditor, but no later than 30 June 2020. Reminder letters incur a charge of £40 +VAT


Annual Governance and Accountability Return 2019/20 Part 2                      Page 3 of 6
Local Councils, Internal Drainage Boards and other Smaller Authorities

Earlier Finance Statements

 

The financial statements below are in Adobe pdf form. If you don't have Adobe Acrobat it can be downloaded for free from the Adobe site.

 

Statement of Account for End of Financial Year March 2011

Statement of Account for End of Financial Year March 2012

Statement of Account for End of Financial Year March 2013

Statement of Account for End of Financial Year March 2014

Statement of Account for End of Financial Year March 2015

Statement of Account for End of Financial Year March 2016

Statement of Account for End of Financial Year March 2017

Statement of Account for End of Financial Year March 2018

 

 

 

Internal Audit Reports

Required by the Transparency Code for Smaller Authorities, the internal audit report is completed by the Internal Auditor and confirms that effective financial control is in place.

The Internal Auditor is not an employee of the Council.

Internal Audit Report for End of Internal Audit Report - Year March 2015

Internal Audit Report for End of Internal Audit Report - Year March 2016

Internal Audit Report for End of Internal Audit Report - Year March 2017

Internal Audit Report for End of Internal Audit Report - Year March 2018

Internal Audit Report for End of Internal Audit Report - Year March 2019

Internal Audit Report for End of Internal Audit Report - Year March 2020

 

Notice of Exempt Authority Certification

At the meeting of the Parish Council on Thursday 4th February 2016 the decision was taken to certify the Council as an exempt authority for the purposes of The Local Audit (Smaller Authorities) Regulations 2015.

The Local Audit (Smaller Authorities) Regulations 2015. Part 3, Section 9 (Exempt Authorities) states that an opted-in authority which has certified itself as exempt must publish a notice on its website stating that it has done so and provide an explanation of the effect of that certification in relation to :-

  • the conduct of the audit of the authority;
  • the appointment of an auditor to audit the accounts of the authority.

The Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014 closed the Audit Commission and established new arrangements in England for the accountability and audit of local public bodies including smaller authorities such as Parish Councils.

The Act uses the general principle that all local public bodies, regardless of size, must account for all the money they receive and spend, wherever it comes from.

Smaller authorities’ annual accounts are subject to an “assurance review”, which involves an auditor issuing a report on the annual return prepared by the authority, rather than a full annual audit.

A smaller authority is an authority that has gross annual income or expenditure (turnover) below £6.5 million.

Smaller authorities with an annual turnover below £25,000 are exempt from the requirement to have a routine annual assurance review and are referred to as ‘exempt authorities.’

Instead of having an annual assurance review, exempt smaller authorities only need to comply with the publication requirements of the Transparency Code for Smaller Authorities, however an auditor must be available to deal with any question or objection to the accounts made by an elector.

From the financial year starting on 1 April 2017, smaller authorities are responsible for appointing their own external auditor. Each year the appointment must be made by the 31 December before the start of the audited year in April. So, by 31 December 2016, smaller authorities must have appointed an external auditor to undertake any assurance review of the 2017/18 accounts

The Secretary of State specified a body that has the power to appoint auditors and set audit fees for smaller authorities. The appointing body makes arrangements to appoint an auditor to all smaller authorities unless they decide to actively opt-out and make the appointment themselves.

Exempt authorities that decide to use an appointing body’s arrangements will not have to have an auditor appointed automatically, unless an elector wishes to ask the auditor a question or make an objection to the accounts. In these circumstances, the local elector will have to contact the appointing body who will then assign an auditor to deal with the question or objection.

Due to the cost and onerous requirements of setting up an Auditor Selection Panel specifically for us, Longsdon Parish Council has decided not to opt out of the appointing body arrangements and will by default be included in the scheme operated by Smaller Authorities’ Audit Appointments Limited 2016, 109 Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3LD

Annual Governance Statements

Required by the Transparency Code for Smaller Authorities, the annual governance statement is signed by the Responsible Financial Officer and the Chair to assert that a sound system of internal control exists and is followed.

It forms part of the annual return which is currently scrutinised by the internal auditor who contrary to the name is not an employee of the Council.

Annual Governance Statement for End of Financial Year March 2015

Annual Governance Statement for End of Financial Year March 2016

Annual Governance Statement for End of Financial Year March 2017

Annual Governance Statement for End of Financial Year March 2018

Annual Governance Statement for End of Financial Year March 2019

Annual Governance Statement for End of Financial Year March 2020

 

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  1. Finance Statements