Daventry District Council offers ‘value for money’, and is ‘prudent’ when it comes to the financial squeeze say auditors

DDC's Lodge Road offices
DDC's Lodge Road offices

Daventry District Council’s finances have been given a clean bill of health

The latest audit by government-appointed experts of the Conservative-controlled local authority’s accounts for 2015/16 recognised the council’s ‘planned and prudent’ approach to tackling its budgetary challenges.

Auditors, KPMG, have issued an ‘unqualified audit opinion’ – meaning the accounts are fairly and appropriately presented and comply with accounting principals.

A report of their findings concludes that DDC has met all the criteria for providing value for money and that financial resilience is currently not an issue for the authority, despite a local and national backdrop of public sector funding challenges.

The auditors stated that the council “in all significant respects... had proper arrangements to ensure it took properly informed decisions and deployed resources to achieve planned and sustainable outcomes for taxpayers and local people.”

Council’s finance officers were also thanked for dealing efficiently with the audit process and recognised for improving the quality of the draft accounts and submitting them two weeks ahead of the Government deadline.

Councillor John Shephard, resources portfolio holder at Daventry District Council, said: “We are really pleased with the auditors’ findings on our accounts and their conclusions that we are achieving value for money.

“Their comments reflect the prudent and planned approach we have been taking towards managing our finances and the ongoing hard work of officers to keep our books balanced in a volatile financial climate.”

The audit report for DDC is rather different from the one given to Northamptonshire County Council earlier in September.

Auditors looking at NCC’s books said the authority – which has a budget far greater than DDC and takes more of the council tax – failed to put arrangements in place to ensure it took properly-informed decisions or to ensure it achieved sustainable outcomes for taxpayers and local people. The report concluded the Tory-run county council does not offer value for money.