Agenda and minutes

Standards and Audit Committee
Thursday, 13th December, 2018 7.00 pm

Venue: Committee Room 1, Civic Offices, New Road, Grays, Essex, RM17 6SL. View directions

Contact: Wendy Le, Democratic Services Officer  Email: Direct.Democracy@thurrock.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

21.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 61 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the Standards and Audit Committeemeeting held on 27 September 2018.

 

Minutes:

The minutes of the Standards and Audit Committee held on 27 September 2018 were approved as a true and correct record.

22.

Items of Urgent Business

To receive additional items that the Chair is of the opinion should be considered as a matter of urgency, in accordance with Section 100B (4) (b) of the Local Government Act 1972.

Minutes:

There were no items of urgent business.

23.

Declaration of Interests

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

24.

Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) 2000 - Activity Report April 2018 - September 2018 pdf icon PDF 65 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Presented by the Strategic Lead of Information Management, the report gave an update on the usage and activity of RIPA requests between April and September 2018. Paragraph 3.2.1 highlighted the amendments that had been made after government consultation work had taken place on surveillance activity and with the new General Data Protection Regulation that came in May 2018.

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.1       That the Standards and Audit Committee noted the statistical information relating to the use of RIPA for the period 1 April 2018 – 30 September 2018.

 

1.2       That the Standards and Audit Committee noted the minor changes made to the RIPA Policy (Appendix A).

25.

Mid-Year Review of the Strategic/Corporate Risk and Opportunity Register pdf icon PDF 106 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The report was presented by the Corporate Risk and Insurance Manager who updated the Committee with the key risks and opportunities identified by the review. A new impact considered was the imminent withdrawal of the UK from the EU.

 

Councillor Johnson declared a non-pecuniary interest as he sat on the Thurrock Regeneration LTD board which was a non-paid position and he was the Portfolio Holder for Housing.

 

Referring to the Health and Social Care Transformation section on page 49 of the report, Councillor Maney pointed out that clarity was needed on the details around Orsett Hospital. NHS had confirmed that no services would be leaving Thurrock but the wording had suggested otherwise. Being a member of the Health and Wellbeing Overview and Scrutiny Committee, the Chair confirmed that some services would be leaving Thurrock and going to other hospitals such as Basildon Thurrock University Hospital. The Corporate Risk and Insurance Manager assured Councillor Maney that his comments would be taken on board for future reports.

 

Regarding the risks around Brexit, Councillor Maney commented that there should be evidence of exploring these risks. Thurrock could be hugely impacted as there were industries along the ports. He was aware of a task force for Brexit and queried who they reported to. The Corporate Risk and Insurance Manager noted Councillor Maney’s points. In answer to Councillor Maney, the Assistant Director of Finance said the Brexit Working Group consisted of stakeholders who reported back to Members. As the UK withdrawal from the EU drew closer, activity in the group had increased.

 

Councillor Maney went on to ask when the Brexit Working Group had been set up and how reports had been managed. The Assistant Director of Finance replied that individual services had analysed risks within their own departments. A particular focus had been on maintaining the levels of adult social care as this would be one of the more affected areas upon the UK withdrawal from the EU. Another focus was on the external risks to Thurrock such as the ports. However, Brexit was difficult for all councils as had been seen in news forums. When the Brexit Working Group and services identified potential risks of Brexit, they would analyse how the risks would be managed.

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.1       That Standards and Audit Committee noted the items and details contained in the Dashboard (Appendix 1).

 

1.2       That Standards and Audit Committee noted the ‘In Focus’ report (Appendix 2), which highlighted the higher priority items identified by the review.

26.

Internal Audit Service Update 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 64 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Presented by the Assistant Director of Finance, the report gave an update of the progress of the audit service. Self-assessment of the service was likely to be undertaken in the next financial year of 2019/20 and appendix 1 provided key points for the service to meet its targets. A report would be brought back to the Committee in between assessment dates.

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.1       That the Standards & Audit Committee:

Agreed that the structure provided members of the Standards & Audit Committee with assurance around the internal control, risk management and governance frameworks.

27.

Internal Audit Progress Report 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 65 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Assistant Director of Finance gave an outline of the report which highlighted the work that had been undertaken on the Internal Audit Plan 2018/19. Section 3 of the report provided an indication of the 4 levels of assurance used for grading identified reports.

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.1       That the Standards & Audit Committee:

Considered reports issued and the work being carried out by Internal Audit in relation to the 2018/19 audit plan.

28.

Counter Fraud and Investigation Quarterly Update pdf icon PDF 80 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The report was presented by the Head of Investigation Team which outlined the performance of the Counter Fraud and Investigation Department (CFID) over the last quarter. Paragraph 3.1 provided an overview of the progress and the CFID would continue to work through the work plan in appendix A. The plan would be brought back again in the next year.

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.1       That the Standards and Audit Committee noted the performance of the Counter Fraud & Investigation Department.

29.

Work Programme pdf icon PDF 50 KB

Minutes:

There were no changes to the work programme.