Committee details

Audit & Standards Committee

Purpose of committee

The Audit and Standards Committee was established at the Annual Council meeting on 24 May 2012. Its role is two-fold:


Audit – The Committee oversees the Council's internal audit and risk functions; receives and approves external audit reports; scrutinises and approves the Annual Statement of Accounts; makes reports and recommendations to the Cabinet, Committees and the Council as a whole on the adequacy of its corporate governance and risk management arrangements and the associated control environment.


Standards - The Committee deals with a range of matters including issues concerning Councillors’ conduct, providing advice and guidance to the Council, the Cabinet and individual Councillors and advising on the application and review of the Constitution.


Terms of reference




1.    To approve the Internal Audit Charter.


2.    To consider the Audit Manager’s annual report and opinion, the summary of Internal Audit activity and the level of assurance it can give over the Council’s corporate governance arrangements. 


3.    To approve the risk-based Internal Audit Plan, including resource requirements and its approach to using other sources of assurance.


4.    To consider summaries of Internal Audit reports.


5.    To consider reports from Internal Audit on agreed recommendations not    implemented within reasonable timescales.


6.    To consider reports dealing with the management and performance of the providers of Internal Audit services. 


7.    To consider the external auditor’s Annual Audit and Inspection Letter and other reports. 


8.    To comment on the scope and depth of external audit work and to ensure it gives value for money. 


9.    To liaise over the appointment of the Council’s external auditor. 


10.  To commission work from Internal Audit and the external auditor. 

Regulatory framework


11.  To review any issue referred to it by the Managing Director, Statutory Officer or any Council body. 


12.  To monitor the effective development and operation of risk management and corporate governance in the Council.


13.  To consider the Council’s arrangements to secure value for money and review assurances and assessments on the effectiveness of these arrangements.


14.  To monitor the Council’s policies on whistle blowing, for contraventions of financial and other procedures or fraud-related situations; Anti-fraud and Corruption Strategy and complaints. 


15.  To monitor the production of the Annual Governance Statement and recommend its adoption to the Cabinet.


16.  To consider the Council’s framework of assurance and ensure it adequately addresses the risks and priorities of the Council.


17.  To consider the Council’s compliance with its own and other published standards and controls. 




18.  To review and approve the Annual Governance Statement and Annual Statement of Accounts, considering whether appropriate accounting policies have been followed.


19.  To consider the external auditor’s report to those charged with governance on issues arising from their audit of the accounts.


Accountability Arrangements


20.  To report to Full Council on a regular basis on the Committee’s performance in relation to the terms of reference and the effectiveness of the Committee in meeting its purpose.




21.  Promoting and maintaining high standards of conduct by Councillors and co-opted persons of Committees.


22.  Assisting Councillors and co-opted persons of Committees to observe the Code of Conduct.


23.  Advising the Council on the adoption or revision of the Code of Conduct.


24.  Monitoring the operation of the Code of Conduct.


25.  Advising and/or censuring and/or imposing a sanction on a Councillor or co-opted person of a Committee (or former Councillor or co-opted person) of the Council.


26.  Having oversight of all aspects of Councillor development.


27.  Receiving annual reports in a monitoring and guidance role on whistle blowing, bullying and harassment.


28.  Being fully involved in any ethical review of the Council or its activities.


Meetings are open to members of the public, except for when confidential information is being considered.


Members of the public may ask questions at meetings of the Audit & Standards Committee.




1.    Full Council shall appoint the Chair and the Vice Chair of the Committee.


The Audit and Standards Committee has one permanent Sub-Committee, the Hearing Sub-Committee:


Contact information

Support officer: Hannah Criddle.

Phone: (01279) 446055