THERE is still no sign of Warrington Borough Council’s accounts being signed off by auditors – which is bad for the reputation of the Labour-run authority say local Lib Dems.
The last three years’ accounts of Warrington Borough Council have still not been signed off by the external auditor, Grant Thornton.
Another update was given to the Council’s Audit Committee on Thursday evening.
Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Finance, Cllr Ian Marks said, “Neither the Council nor the Auditor are willing to commit to a date for the signing off. Given the number of promised dates that have been missed, I can’t say I am surprised. All we hear is that progress is being made and the number of issues in dispute is coming down.
“Both parties are engaging experts to give them advice so it’s not surprising that progress is slow. Experts don’t come cheaply either. Changes to the rules and enhanced requirements over the last few years have meant that some back-tracking has had to take place over parts of the accounts that had been ticked off previously.
“Hopefully once the 2017/18 accounts have been cleared, it won’t take too long for the 2018/19 and 2019/20 sets to be completed. This delay can only be bad for the reputation of the Labour Council, particularly if the finalised accounts are not available before the May elections, that the Government has now decided will go ahead.”
*Deuty leaer of the council and Labour’s finance spokesperson Cllr Cathy Mitchell said: “Yet again we reiterate to Cllr Marks that the council has provided everything that Grant Thornton has asked for and would like this concluded as soon as possible. The timeline for this matter is in the control of Grant Thornton but we are hopeful that matters will be concluded soon.”
The delay in Warrington Borough Council’s accounts from 2017/18 was caused by a member of the public challenging the council’s £30m investment into Redwood Bank.