Under the Local Government Finance Act 1992 ss39,41,52,51 and Council Tax (Administration and Enforcement) Regulations 1992 No. 613 art 4. (1), the Parish Council has the power to raise income to meet its expenses by means of an annual charge, the 'precept', from those resident within its parish.
The precept is set each year by the Parish Council, as part of its annual budgeting process and is collected on the Parish Council's behalf by Forest Heath District Council, the authority responsible for collecting Council Tax within its area.
The following members of the Council are also the cheque signatories:
Cllr Stephen Smith, Cllrs, Richard Saul and Vanessa Kovacevic
The Clerk/RFO are NOT cheque signatories. All cheques must be signed by any two of the above councillors.
The Audit Commission Act 1998 and the Accounts and Audit Regulations, which are issued from time to time under this Act, set out how local councils should behave when accounting for the public funds they manage and what rights local taxpayers have in relation to these accounts. The Parish Council submits its accounts to two separate auditors per annum and the findings are recorded on the Annual Return Form. The financial year runs from 1st April to 31st March.
The Internal Audit, carried out by SALC is totally independent from the Parish Council and looks at the internal workings of the council e.g. the minutes, insurance policies, along with the Financial Management of Risk and the accounts. The council is also required to carry out annually, a review of the effectiveness of their system of internal control.
The Annual Return accompanied by a Summary of Receipts and Payments, a Bank Reconciliation and the Reason for Variance are then sent to the External Auditor (for our council PKF Littlejohn LLP, 15 Westferry Circus, Canary Wharf, London E14 4HD) who will carry out an audit and subsequently return a report. Copies of the Annual Return can be found on the left of the page.