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Council finances given auditors approval

Article date - 08 August 2019

St Helens Council’s annual accounts have been given a clean bill of health.
Budget

Every year, independent auditors appointed by Public Sector Audit Appointments Limited assess the council’s financial position and give their verdict on whether the Council's statement of accounts is accurate and funding plans are suitable. Auditors Grant Thornton UK LLP said that the council’s accounts for 2018/19 had gained an unqualified opinion, the best possible opinion. That means the council is reporting its financial position accurately and is complying with all relevant reporting guidelines.

The auditors report also highlighted their satisfaction with the council's ability to continue as a going concern and there were no concerns over the council's financial planning and forecasting.

The report said the council had proper arrangements in place to ensure value for money was secured; this means that resources are being used efficiently and effectively, in an economical manner. The report also highlighted that the council had provided all information and explanations to auditors when requested.

Welcoming the results, Councillor Martin Bond, Cabinet Member for Finance, said: "We are pleased to see the auditors recognise the hard work by our finance team in helping to guide the council to be financially assured, despite the challenging pressures on our services. Through their diligence and expert advice, the team have helped us to build on already solid foundations. This lets us allocate resources into the areas that protect our most vulnerable residents, like children’s services and adult social care, while not forgetting the important funding for our ambitious growth plans for St Helens.”

The Audit Findings Report, along with the Statement of Accounts can be found online at https://www.sthelens.gov.uk/council/council-finance-performance/annual-accounts/