Audit & Risk Management Committee (Wirral Council) 29th November 2011 Part 3 Internal Audit Update

The committee considered the Internal Audit update. A council officer said it covered from the beginning of September to October and that he wanted to bring to the committee’s attention several items. At 1.5 the format and content of Internal Audit reports was under review by a working party. This included the Chief Internal Auditor, Deputy Chief Internal Auditor, Chair of the Audit & Risk Management Committee and Deputy Chair of the Audit and Risk Management Committee. 4.6 detailed several high-profile items, there was no specific recommendation for action but he wanted to highlight these. 4.3(b)(i) dealt with the issue of the failure to implement agreed recommendations, it needed further action to encourage officers to urgently implement the recommendations.

The officer said that 4.2.1 dealt with Internal Audit staffing as the “current staffing was in peril” due to maternity leave, sickness leave which had been exacerbated by two officers unavailable as they were seconded full-time to deal with the Anna Klonowski recommendations. A member of staff was also going on jury service. Group auditors had been seconded to the corporate governance team full-time from Monday. They had been authorised to engage appropriate staff through the corporate agency contract. Staff would be selected next week.

Cllr Ron Abbey said he had a number of questions and thanked officers for the report. He said that staffing issues were covered in item 5 but caused short-term difficulties. Referring to 4.3 (b)(i) he said it could slip off the side and never be actioned. As it was high risk and high priority, he said that the officer dealing with it was not sitting here was “ridiculous” and “scandalous”.

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