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Minutes of Working Group meeting held on Thursday, 21st March 2024 to review and assess the effectiveness of internal control measures

Mere Town Council

Town Clerk – Mrs. L. C. Wood


Minutes of a working group meeting held on Thursday, 21st March 2024 at 3.30 pm at Duchy Manor, Springfield Road, Mere.  BA12 6EW


Purpose of the meeting: To review and assess the effectiveness of internal control measures:


In attendance – Cllr. John Jordan (Chairman) +  Cllr. Lesley Traves + Cllr. Sandra Catley  + Lindsey Wood (Town Clerk & RFO).


Two draft documents had been presented to working group members prior to the meeting:


  • Statement of Internal Controls 2024
  • schedule for Internal Control Measures


It was pointed out that the Council’s Risk Management is currently undergoing a major review as the Town Council has just appointed Guardian Advisors Ltd to analyse the Town Councils needs and requirements to create a functioning Health & Safety management system and provide support, advice and training where needed.  The Schedule for Internal Control Measures highlighted the Internal Control Measures & Risk Assessments that were likely to be reviewed in the next year.


One or two minor amendments were made to the Statement of Internal Controls and members were happy to present these to the Council for adoption and signature. (Draft Statement of Internal Controls 2024 attached)


In view of the decision made at the Town Council meeting held on 15.1.24 (Minute Ref: 362f) it was agreed that an amendment should be made to the Annual Investment Strategy in order to accommodate the investment to be made into CCLA’s Public Sector Deposit Fund.  (Draft Annual Investment Strategy attached)


In respect of the ‘except for’ matter that was raised by the External Auditor in September last year, the Clerk confirmed that following discussion with the Internal Auditor, she was currently revising the Council’s Asset Register and Asset Management Policy which would also be presented to the Town Council for approval/adoption at the next meeting. (Fixed Asset Register 2023/24 + Draft Asset Management Policy attached)


With the adoption of these new and/or amended documents, members of the working group recommended that the Town Council should confirm that it had made proper arrangements and accepted responsibility for safeguarding the public money and resources in its charge.  Members recommended that the Council should agree that they had considered and documented the financial and other risks the Council faces and dealt with them properly.  These assertions would enable the Town Council to agree ‘yes’ to assertions 2 and 5 in the Annual Governance & Accountability Report for the year ending 31.3.2024.