A Local council's financial year begins on 1st April and ends on 31st March in the following year. Legislation requires a council to prepare accounting statements for each financial year, which must be externally audited. Proper practices provide for a council to prepare its accounting statements in the form required by an annual return which summarises the accounts and includes an annual governance statement.

The external Audit of a council's annual return provides a professional audit of a council's annual income and expenditure, or receipts and payments, and a review of the annual governance statement by someone who is independent to the council.

A council is responsible for ensuring that its financial management is adequate and effective.

(Local Councils Explained, A NALC Publication, Meera Tharmarajah)

Our Governance Policies are available to view in the Documents section.
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