Issue - meetings

Annual Governance Statement: 2018-19

Meeting: 11/06/2019 - Finance and Audit Committee (Item 7)

7 Annual Governance Statement: 2018-19 pdf icon PDF 95 KB

To seek approval from Members of the Finance and Audit Committee of the Annual Governance Statement for the 2018-19 financial year.

Additional documents:


Approval of the Annual Governance Statement for the 2018-19 financial year was sought from Members of the Finance & Audit Committee. 


The review of the council’s 2018-19 governance arrangements was conducted by the Corporate Performance Manager in accordance with the principles adopted by the council’s Code of Corporate Governance, itself a framework designed upon the guidance issued by CIPFA/SOLACE.


As part of the review, assurance of the effective operation of the council’s governance arrangements has been sought from a number of sources such as the Section 151 Officer, the Monitoring Officer, the Chief Audit Executive, external auditors and the Local Government Ombudsmen etc.  All source material, including the results of the review itself, have been itemised at appendix two of the report.


The Assistant Director (Corporate Services) reminded Members that all of the documents listed at Appendix 2 that supported the Annual Governance Statement had been published on the web library, which could be accessed via the website. A Member of the Committee Team emailed around the link a few weeks ago. 


The Assistant Director (Corporate Services) directed Members attention to page 101 of the report where the Annual Governance Statement was provided and explained that it would be a good reference document for new Members to get a feel of the governance framework Gravesham operates under.


The review established that the authority had adequate governance arrangements in place. Whilst no significant issues were identified, the review did present some opportunities to further develop and strengthen the council’s governance and internal control environment.


The Assistant Director (Corporate Services) further explained those opportunities (page 107) and their required actions:


  • Constitution


-       Complete the next phase of the scheduled review of the council’s Constitution and re-issue to all Members.


  • Investors in People (IIP): Action Plan


-       To develop an effective action plan with which to build on the recommendations of the 2019 IIP assessment, ensuring the council develops an operational culture in line with industry good practice.


  • Communications and Engagement Strategy


-       In developing a Communications and Engagement Strategy the council will aim to establish the principles that will guide how we communicate and engage, in language that people can understand, and through readily accessible channels.


  • Corporate Plan: 2019-23  


-       Develop a new Corporate Plan for the council using the research and principles identified from the Community Profile and Corporate Plan consultation exercise, alongside the key pledges and messages established in the administration’s election manifesto.


Referencing Appendix 1 on page 98, concern was raised over the explanations and their clarity; the Assistant Director (Corporate Services) advised she would feed that back to the responsible officer.


Resolved that Members:


  • Noted the findings of the review of the council’s governance arrangements for 2018-19


  • Approved and supported the Annual Governance Statement for the 2018-19 financial year