Tuesday 16 July 2024
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Nottingham

Nottingham City Council: Plans to improve financial management on track

Nottingham City Council says that it is making positive progress on improving control and stewardship of its finances with a series of actions that are already complete, underway or in the pipeline.

The council’s Financial Improvement Plan was presented to its Audit Committee today (Friday 28 July), outlining a wide range of measures to improve financial governance and its financial management, control and reporting framework.

The council is under scrutiny by the Government-appointed Improvement and Assurance Board and has been taking steps to address several issues brought to light following the collapse of Robin Hood Energy (RHE).

One issue relating directly relating to RHE has been the inability of the council to finalise its accounts for 2019/20. These are now ready for external audit certification and those for 2020/21 and 2021/22, similarly delayed, will be ready for auditing by September 2023.

The council has also now embedded a corporate control, accounting and recording framework for grants into the council throughout the organisation.

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The council says it has enhanced its grip on the transformation programme and the part it plays in achieving savings – over £15m in the current financial year – and contributing to the medium-term financial plan (MTFP), with a newly established Transformation Oversight Board set up to monitor progress.

A central savings tracker is being developed to support the council to embed robust financial control as part of its Budget and MTFP process, which will allow it to identify shortfalls and mitigations at an earlier stage.

A key focus area for the council is the implementation of remediation to mitigate risk in its financial control environment.

City Council Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Finance, Cllr Audra Wynter, said: “While we continue to face a number of challenges, we are starting to make demonstrable improvements that will have a positive and lasting impact on improving control and stewardship of our finances.

“Establishing strong and robust financial management arrangements is a top priority for us requiring determination, discipline and some difficult decisions across the organisation. We are focused on meeting these challenges through our Financial Improvement Plan, and emerging a stronger organisation that’s better equipped to provide good, value-for-money services to local residents.”

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