To be completed by Local Councils, Internal Drainage Boards and other Smaller Authorities*: where the higher of gross income or gross expenditure exceeded £25,000 but did not exceed £6.5 million; or where the higher of gross income or gross expenditure was £25,000 or less but that: are unable to certify themselves as exempt (fee payable); or have requested a limited assurance review (fee payable) Guidance notes on completing Part 3 of the Annual Governance and Accountability Return 2019/20 1. Every smaller authority in England that either received gross income or incurred gross expenditure exceeding £25,000 must complete Part 3 of the Annual Governance and Accountability Return at the end of each financial year in accordance with Proper Practices. 2. The Annual Governance and Accountability Return is made up of three parts, pages 3 to 6: The Annual Internal Audit Report is completed by the authority’s internal auditor. Sections 1 and 2 are to be completed and approved by the authority. Section 3 is completed by the external auditor and will be returned to the authority. 3. The authority must approve Section 1, Annual Governance Statement, before approving Section 2, Accounting Statements, and both must be approved and published before 1 July 2020. 4. An authority with either gross income or gross expenditure exceeding £25,000 or an authority with neither income nor expenditure exceeding £25,000, but which is unable to certify itself as exempt, or is requesting a limited assurance review, must return to the external auditor by email or post (not both) no later than 30 June 2020. Reminder letters will incur a charge of £40 +VAT: the Annual Governance and Accountability Return Sections 1 and 2, together with a bank reconciliation as at 31 March 2020 an explanation of any significant year on year variances in the accounting statements notification of the commencement date of the period for the exercise of public rights Annual Internal Audit Report 2019/20 Unless requested, do not send any additional documents to your external auditor. Your external auditor will ask for any additional documents needed. Once the external auditor has completed the limited assurance review and is able to give an opinion, the Annual Governance and Accountability Section1, Section 2 and Section 3 – External Auditor Report and Certificate will be returned to the authority by email or post. Publication Requirements Under the Accounts and Audit Regulations 2015, authorities must publish the following information on a publicly accessible website: Before 1 July 2020 authorities must publish: Notice of the period for the exercise of public rights and a declaration that the accounting statements are as yet unaudited; Section 1 - Annual Governance Statement 2019/20, approved and signed, page 4 Section 2 - Accounting Statements 2019/20, approved and signed, page 5 Not later than 30 September 2020 authorities must publish: Notice of conclusion of audit Section 3 - External Auditor Report and Certificate Sections 1 and 2 of AGAR including any amendments as a result of the limited assurance review. It is recommended as best practice, to avoid any potential confusion by local electors and interested parties, that you also publish the Annual Internal Audit Report, page 3.
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Annual Governance and Accountability Return 2019/20 Part 3 Local Councils, Internal Drainage Boards and other Smaller Authorities*
The Annual Governance and Accountability Return constitutes the annual return referred to in the Accounts and Audit Regulations 2015. Throughout, the words ‘external auditor’ have the same meaning as the words ‘local auditor’ in the Accounts and Audit Regulations 2015. *for a complete list of bodies that may be smaller authorities refer to schedule 2 to the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014.