Baseline audit expected to start soon

Baseline audit expected to start soon

Council has said it expects to appoint financial consultants to carry out a baseline review by October 23.

Councillors agreed by a 4-3 vote on August 26 that "a baseline audit of council's finances from 2016-19 be carried out as soon as possible".

Councillors Robyn Bain, Mitchell Nadin and Tony Allen had sought resolution for a forensic audit at an extra-ordinary council meeting on July 13 but did not have the support of other councillors.

The resolutions followed a series of financial reports presented at council meetings, which provided an ever-changing landscape of council's financial situation.

Council said the "baseline review was scoped based on council's resolution at the August 26 meeting" and was subsequently issued to suppliers on the Local Government Procurement - Professional Services Panel.

"It is expected the evaluation panel will appoint a successful consultancy by the end of this week," council said on October 20.


Whether the project will be a financial audit or review will depend on the scope of works that has been drawn up. An audit is generally considered to be the more thorough investigation and must be conducted by a qualified auditor. A review may cover similar ground but doesn't have to be such a 'deep dive' and does not need to be conducted by an auditor, but by a suitably qualified financial professional.

The resolution of council uses both the phrases "baseline audit" and "baseline review".

The evaluation panel which will appoint the successful consultancy, includes the mayor Russell Fitzpatrick and council's director business and governance, Iliada Bolton.

"In addition, council has engaged a local government finance professional to assist the team with collating and supplying the data required for the review," council said.

"We expect the outcomes of the review to be completed by the end of the year," council added.

It was agreed at the meeting on August 26 that the cost of the baseline audit be taken from the general managers legal and investigations fund and that on the completion of the baseline review, those figures are used as the starting point for the Long Term Financial Plan.