Services Group Manager
David Curl, Parking Strategy & Implementation Team
Tim Semken, Lead
Simon White, Audit Performance Manager
Declarations of interest:
points raised during the discussion:
- The Local
Highway Services Group Manager introduced the report and informed
the Board that Surrey County Council (SCC) have been responsible
for parking enforcement since 2004 however the contracts in place
were due to expire in 2018. SCC was originally operating at a loss
of £1M but from 2011/12 were operating at no loss. There have
been concerns around parking enforcement but arrangements with
agents have worked well.
- Due to
concerns highlighted by Members regarding issues with enforcement,
audit have provided the report which has been presented to the
indicated that they had met with Reigate and Banstead officers which led to positive discussions
and outcomes, Officers advised that further details from this
meeting could be provided at a future date.
Chairman advised the Board that reports received from audit should
be reviewed with the approach that Members are satisfied the report
has not overlooked or missed anything key. The Chairman further
advised that Members should be confident the Management Action Plan
(MAP) has addressed these concerns.
- In terms of
the Management Action Plan, it was noted that the Audit and
Governance Committee had raised concerns and gave the opinion the
Plan should be stronger.
- A Member
queried whether the report only assessed and concentrated on
Reigate and Banstead or if concerns had
been presented in relation to all other Borough and Districts. The
Officer advised that as well as Reigate and Banstead, other authorities such as Elmbridge and Guildford were audited. The
Services Group Manager was confident that information presented
from the agents was accurate.
was made to one of the key findings of the audit report which
stated that annual returns of all Boroughs and Districts were
subject to audit verification before it was submitted to SCC.
Officers were asked how this fits alongside the current contractual
agreement which covers the period 2013-2018 and whether authorities
could demand this as this had not been enforced or met with.
Members were assured Officers had the ability to make sure this was
complied with and going forward would devise a mechanism to ensure
it would be carried out.
the discussion above the Member raised the concern that contractual
requirements should be monitored, the Officer indicated that it was
an agency agreement and not a formal contractual
- There was a
discussion around fixed apportionments and whether there was any
conclusion to reviewing this. The Officer explained this was a
complex area and to ensure SCC break even on the deficits produced
this will be raised with the Surrey Treasurers’ Group in
identifying a consistent approach for future arrangements across
- A Member
suggested that it would be beneficial to have information
illustrating good practice and behavioural patterns across the
County to allow Members to see where good performance is taking
place. The Officer advised that this information was available in
the Annual report and would be happy to share a link with
- A Member
shared the view that the language used in the report implied that
there was misappropriation and queried if this should be
investigated further. The Audit Performance Manager
assured the Board that although the report included
strong worded terminology there were no suspicions that any
misappropriation had taken place.
- It was
brought to the Boards attention that there was no ability to
challenge overheads at Local Committee level and an audit method
should be in place to ensure transparency of allocations.
Performance Managerexplained that as each of
the district and boroughs were sovereign authorities there was a
trust that audits were carried out objectively. It was explained
that officers had asked for certification for annual financial
returns and received regular audit records.
- A Member
highlighted that external auditors had given Reigate and
Banstead an ‘outstanding’
audit rating. It was stated that Reigate and Banstead used to make a surplus but when there had
been a change of reporting they were in fact making a deficit. The
Chairman noted this point and advised this area was complex,
however gave high regard to the team present at today’s
meeting in ensuring improvements would be made.
Services Group Manager indicated that the MAP
would run until April 2017 and would be happy to update the Board
at a future meeting. The Chairman suggested the Board review this
item further in 6 months’ time.
The Board reviewed and
commented on the audit report and Management Action
EP9- For the Local Highway Services Group Manager to send the
board a link detailing performance per borough in relation to
EP10- For a Civil Parking Enforcement Audit Update Item to be
added to the forward work programme for summer 2017.