Agenda and minutes

Audit and Resources Committee
Tuesday, 4 December 2018 6:15 pm

Venue: Rooms 16 and 17, Eastleigh House, Upper Market Street, Eastleigh, SO50 9YN

Contact: Cheryll Kemsley, Democratic Services Officer, tel: 023 8068 8112 Email:  cheryll.kemsley@eastleigh.gov.uk  Sarah King, Corporate Director, Support Services (CFO), tel 023 8068 8011 Email:  sarah.king@eastleigh.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

52.

Public Participation

Minutes:

There was no public participation on this occasion.

53.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 74 KB

To consider the Minutes of the meeting held on 13 November 2018.

Minutes:

RESOLVED –

 

That the Minutes of the meeting held on 13 November 2018 be confirmed and signed by the Chairman as a correct record.

54.

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest in relation to items of business on the agenda.

55.

External Audit Progress

Minutes:

The Chair reported that although EY was still the external auditor, the representatives had now changed and the Council would be working with the new team shortly.

 

The Committee wished to give thanks to Martin Young, Manager, EY for his assistance over the past years.

56.

Internal Audit Monitoring Statement for the Period 1 July to 30 September 2018 DOCX 60 KB

Minutes:

Consideration was given to the report of the Internal Audit Lead Specialist (Chief Internal Auditor) which was the second monitoring statement for the current financial year (2018/19), and outlined the audit activity for the period July to 30 September 2018, as summarised in Appendices A and B to the report.

 

The Committee was advised that the recruitment of an Audit Senior Specialist on a two year fixed term contract was progressing.

 

During the discussion a number of matters were raised including the following:

 

·                   Civil Parking Enforcement – an update on the payment IT issues was to be given in her report at the next meeting.

·                   Health and Safety – Legionella – Members sought assurance that the appropriate tests had been conducted and there were no risks within the Council. Following the meeting, the Corporate Director advised the following:

“A detailed action plan for reviewing Legionella testing had been completed by the Facilities Manager and reviewed by Management Team.  Currently all buildings with significant health and safety concerns (e.g. with water vapour) were covered by a maintenance programme.  A new contract for legionella testing was to be awarded on 21 December 2018 which would cover all buildings for which the Council was responsible, to ensure a consistent approach in discharging the Council’s statutory duties.”

·                   Corporate Credit Cards – Members requested that it be recommended to the Procurement Executive Group to have compliance with credit card systems and processes as a Key Performance Indicator (KPI).

 

The Committee thanked the Chief Internal Auditor for her report.

 

RESOLVED -  

 

(1)         That the Internal Audit Monitoring Statement for the second quarter of 2018/19 be noted;

 

(2)         That the progress made on the implementation of Internal and External Audit recommendations be noted; and

 

(3)         That Audit and Resources Committee recommend that the Procurement Executive Group monitors the recommendations set down by Internal Audit regarding the Corporate Credit Cards and has this as a Key Performance Indicator.

57.

Staffing Issues (HR/UNISON) DOCX 62 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Catherine Granville, HR Lead Specialist, began by advising that although the unions had been invited to the meeting, there were no representatives able to attend. UNISON currently did not have a Branch Secretary but had advised that it appreciated being offered the opportunity to address the Committee. UNISON still represented staff, responded to HR policy changes, attended Joint Consultative Committees, held recruitment fares, and lunch and learn seminars. UNISON stated that the report appeared factual and balanced.

 

The Chair advised that the Committee valued the unions input and gave an open invitation to meet with them in the future, and hoped representatives could attend as part of the staffing annual report next year.

 

The Lead Specialist provided a summary of the key workforce data and analysis over the last twelve months, with an update on the People Strategy.

 

There had been good progress against the People Strategy and the key aims were either in place or due shortly. It was important that the Council built on this progress and continued to support and promote a productive, inclusive, supportive and enjoyable work environment.

 

During the discussion a number of matters were raised including the following:

 

·                   Gender Pay Gap

·                   Sickness Absence Data – were there underlying issues; was the Council, as employers, expecting too much from staff

·                   Mental Health Issues

·                   Pay and Reward Framework

·                   Staff Recognition

·                   Apprentices

·                   Communication – to include councillors in communication; understanding how staff viewed their relationship with councillors; and how councillors felt about staff. The HR Lead Specialist would share the feedback from the recent Political Awareness training undertaken by senior managers and include it as part of the staffing review report for next year.

 

The Chair reiterated that the Audit and Resources Committee was always very supportive of staff and would welcome an adapted survey.

 

The Committee thanked Catherine and her team for an informative report.

58.

The Point and Berry Business Plans

Please note that this item has now been deferred and will not be considered at the meeting.

Minutes:

This item was deferred to 22 January 2019 meeting.

 

Councillor Atkinson requested that her disappointment in the deferral of the Theatres’ Business Plans be recorded. The Committee had been asking for the Plans for some time and this was not the first time they had been deferred.

59.

Verbal Updates from Members Representing Strategic Risk Management Group (SRMG) / Procurement Executive Group (PEG)

Minutes:

(a)         Strategic Risk Management Group (SRMG)

 

Councillor Irish reported that the next meeting was on 28 January 2019.

 

(b)         Procurement Executive Group (PEG)

 

Councillor Dean reported on the meeting held on 20 November 2018:

 

·         Procurement Policy was given some minor amendments and approved.

·         A Council Procurement Action Plan was approved – It had been drawn to the Group’s attention that perhaps the Council could be more commercial/efficient by using its own services as suppliers, and that the IT software could be set to challenge direction of workflow.

·         Next meeting would be on 22 January 2019.

60.

Action List pdf icon PDF 61 KB

Minutes:

The Committee considered the Action List, which set out the recent decisions and subsequent actions arising from the Committee. The Committee asked for further updates for the next meeting.

 

With regards to the Corporate Risk Management (Minute 43), the Chair reported that he had received the following update from the Corporate Director, Support Services:

 

“At its 13 November 2018 meeting, this Committee raised the matter of the Corporate Risk Register (CRR) and wished to be able to review the content of the register at least once a year, so that they could discharge their responsibilities as they understood them.  The issue was considered at Management Team on 14 November 2018. 

 

The relevant Constitutional remit of the Audit and Resources Committee in this regard was: ‘Overview the Council’s risk management arrangements and provide independent assurance of the adequacy of the risk management framework’ (Article 10.03).  This extract provides clarity and explains that the Committee’s role relates to process and policy, rather than detail and implementation.  Management Team therefore took the view that it was adequate for this Committee to receive a report and ask questions about the Framework (i.e. the policies of the Council in relation to corporate and operational risk management), rather than the implementation of such policies and the management of individual risks that populate the CRR.   

 

Where the Audit and Resources Committee felt they needed reassurance on implementation and individual risks, it had appointed a representative (Councillor Irish) who performed this function on behalf of the Committee.  Some of the wording in the appendices to the report that the Committee received (i.e. the Council’s Risk Framework, roles and responsibilities) was to be amended to remove any ambiguity on this issue, and to reassure councillors that they could discharge their duties fully without sight of the contents of the CRR.  

 

Management Team requested that the format (but not the contents) of the CRR be included in forthcoming Member training on Risk Management in 2019.  

 

The discussion had served as a reminder that Cabinet should play a greater role in overseeing the Risk Framework and a report was now being prepared.”

 

The Committee, whilst considering the above response, still felt that it should review the risk management process and, without sight of the register, was impossible to do. The Corporate Director agreed to take the Committee’s concerns back to Management Team.

 

It was AGREED -

 

That the Action List be noted.

61.

Cabinet Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 59 KB

Minutes:

The Committee considered the current Forward Plan of Key Decisions.

 

It was AGREED -

 

That the current Forward Plan be noted.

62.

Audit and Resources Work Programme pdf icon PDF 55 KB

Minutes:

The Committee considered its current Work Programme.

 

The Point and Berry Business Plans had been deferred from this meeting and added to the work programme for 22 January 2019.

 

It was AGREED -

 

That the Work Programme be noted.