The County Council, in common with local government as a whole and many other public bodies, is required to maintain an internal audit function. The requirement is set out in the Accounts and Audit Regulations 2003 which specify that:
"A relevant body shall maintain an adequate and effective system of internal audit of its accounting records and of its internal control..."
Within Somerset County Council, Internal Audit is provided under a service agreement with the South West Audit Partnership (SWAP) which currently runs until 31 March 2015.
About this service
In addition to providing services to Somerset County Council, the South West Audit Partnership covers 5 District Councils in Somerset and a variety of other councils and public bodies in the region. A full list of partner organisations can be found on the SWAP website via the above link.
The Internal Audit function should not be confused with the External Audit of the Council's Annual Accounts which is currently undertaken by the Audit Commission.
Who can use it?
As a support service, South West Audit Partnership has very little interaction with the Public. However, should a member of the public wish to raise a matter relating to fraud or corruption, then it may be appropriate that they speak to an internal auditor on 01823 355299.
Where is it?
South West Audit Partnership
Somerset County Council
C2W, County Hall
When is it open?
Monday to Thursday 9am to 5pm, Friday 9am to 4:30pm, Saturday and Sunday closed
- The work of internal audit will include, but is not restricted to:
- reviewing the reliability and integrity of financial and operating information and the means used to identify, measure, classify and report such information;
- evaluating and appraising the risks associated with the areas under review and make proposals for improving the management of risks;
- appraise the effectiveness and reliability of the enterprise risk management framework and recommend improvements where necessary;
- assist management and Members to identify risks and controls with regard to the objectives of the Council and its services;
- reviewing the systems established by management to ensure compliance with those policies, plans, procedures, laws and regulations which could have a significant impact on operations and reports, and determining whether Somerset County Council is in compliance;
- reviewing the means of safeguarding assets and, as appropriate, verifying the existence of assets;
- appraising the economy, efficiency and effectiveness with which resources are employed;
- reviewing operations or programmes to ascertain whether results are consistent with established objectives and goals and whether the operations or programmed are being carried out as planned;
- reviewing the operations of the Council in support of the Council's anti-fraud and corruption and Whistleblowing policies.