MINUTES OF AN EXTRAORDINARY PARISH MEETING HELD IN THE VILLAGE HALL ON TUESDAY 29TH MAY AT 6 P.M.
Col. Chris Woodhouse (Chairman)
Mrs Lynda Woodhouse
Mrs Diana Masters
Mr David Masters
Mr Hugh Honnywill
Mrs Marian Honnywill
Mrs Shirley Rice
Mrs Jackie Dyer
Mrs Rita Showering
Mr. Tom Trouton
- APOLOGIES: Mr Keith Harris, Mrs Sue Harris, Mr Michael Metcalf, Mrs Michela Metcalf, Mrs Mary Anderson, Mrs Liz Marriott.
- The Chairman apologised for calling this meeting at such short notice and explained that he was up against a very tight timetable and that the motion he was to put to the meeting could only be voted on at a properly constituted Parish Meeting. He further explained what had happened since the meeting on 15th May last.
- THE ANNUAL GOVERNANCE AND ACCOUNTABILITY RETURN:
a. Background: The Chairman reminded the meeting that on 15th May 2018 the Parish Meeting approved the Annual Governance and Accountability Return prior to the document being sent to our new external auditors, PFK Littlejohn. He reminded the meeting that the accounts had been audited by Mr. John Houchin who confirmed the internal control objectives and that the Accounting Statement had been approved by Mr. Rob Dyer in his capacity as Responsible Financial Officer.
b. Change of External Auditors and Regulations: The Chairman reported that having completed all the documents produced last year he had spoken to the new external audit company, PFK Littlejohn, to confirm that he had all the correct documentation. Since the audit last year, not only had a new audit company been appointed, but the regulations have changed also and he wanted to ensure that the Parish was complying with these new requirements.
c. The Chairman explained that anyone who has had the misfortune to have to submit these forms in the past would know to their cost that any errors made would result in an immediate fine from the auditors.
d. New Regulations: PFK Littlejohn confirmed that all the documents the Chairman had prepared were correct but since last year a new regulation had come into being that would enable the Parish to certify itself exempt from having an external audit, known as a limited assurance review, carried out at all provided it met certain criteria. Essentially those smaller authorities whose gross income or gross expenditure is less than £25,000 can certify themselves exempt and as can be seen from the accounts the Parish is a long way from meeting this.
e. The Chairman added that there is of course a catch in that a variation of the Annual Governance and Accountability Return still has to be completed but he only has to submit a Certificate of Exemption, page 3 of the Return, to the external auditors, not the whole Return. The advantage of this is that if the whole Return is submitted to PFK Littlejohn it would automatically incur a bill for £200 plus VAT but if the Parish chose to exempt itself it would cost nothing. However, there is still a requirement to post the whole Return on the Parish website.
f. All the documentation required have been completed and are ready to be posted on our website, what was now needed was to decide whether or not the Parish wished to certify itself as exempt from having a limited assurance review carried out.
g. The Chairman invited comments and questions. Mrs Rita Showering enquired if, under this new system the Parish had to be exempted each year. The Chairman thought that this was probably the case, but that only the Certificate of Exemption would have to be submitted. Afternote: It is confirmed that the Parish will have to certify itself exempt from undertaking a limited assurance review every year at its Annual Meeting in May.
h. The motion “Does Silton Parish Meeting wish to certify itself as exempt from a limited assurance review” was proposed by Mr. David Masters, seconded by Mrs Rita Showering and unanimously agreed.
There being no other business, the meeting ended at 6.06 p.m.