Darley Dale Town Council, as a public body, is responsible for its own finances.
It is required to make arrangements for the proper administration of its financial affairs, which is the responsibility of an officer.
The officer whose job it is to oversee the finances of the council is referred to as the Responsible Financial Officer (RFO).
Darley Dale Town Council has combined the role of RFO with that of the Town Clerk.
The Town Council works within a legal framework that is specified within the Accounts and Audit Regulations.
It must ensure that its business is conducted transparently and in accordance with the law and proper standards.
We take our responsibility seriously for ensuring that public money is safeguarded, accounted for and efficiently allocated.
Each year we are subject to an internal and external audit of our procedures and financial management.
The Council must work within a legal framework that is specified within the Accounts and Audit Regulations and it must ensure that its business is conducted in accordance with the law and proper standards.
Good governance, accountability and transparency are essential and a cornerstone to improving public services. The Council must ensure that public money is safeguarded, properly accounted for and used economically, efficiently and effectively.
PKF Littlejohn are the Council’s appointed External Auditors with effect from the 2018/2019 audit for a fixed five year period. The Audit Commission will continue to monitor the performance of the external auditors assessing the quality of their work and ensuring they carry it out in compliance with their statutory obligations.
Darley Dale Town Council is also required to appoint an Internal Auditor who will monitor and review the arrangements in place to ensure the proper conduct and effectiveness of its financial affairs. The Council must have an adequate system of internal control and risk management. This review is an integral part of continually improving governance and accountability.
The Council is required to publicly report the outcome of the review of its accounts and also to make its accounting statements and other documents available for public inspection.
The Town Council’s accounting year runs from 1 April to 31 March.
The Annual Return (Annual Governance and Accountability Return – AGAR) comprises of a 6 page document that must be presented to the Full Town Council for formal approval before it is submitted to the external auditor by 30th of June each year.
The independent internal auditor is also required to sign the Annual Return.
The Annual Return is sent to the external auditor with a variety of supporting documentation, which varies from year to year depending on the specific request of the external auditor. However, the supporting documentation normally includes copies of end of year bank statements and all reports made by the internal auditor, and often insurance policy details, asset and property registers, copies of governance documentation (council rules), risk management schedules and copies of minutes for some specific items.
Upon receipt, the external auditor will examine the Annual Return and its supporting documentation. Sections 1 and 2 of the AGAR form can be found here. The external auditor will then complete section 3 (of the 6 page Annual Return) the ‘External Auditor’s Report and Certificate’ and return it to the Town Council. Please click hereto review section 3 of the report.
The Town Council is required to display the fully completed (6 page) Annual Return, with an accompanying notice that advises local electors how they can view the Annual Return. Please click hereto review this notice.
The Precept is that element of your Council Tax that is paid to Darley Dale Town Council.
Every year, the Town Council draws up budgets and calculates how much money it needs for the next Financial Year. These are usually finalised at the January Full Council meeting and then submitted to Derbyshire Dales District Council (DDDC). DDDC co-ordinate the other demands from Derbyshire County Council, Police and themselves and come up with the rate to be paid from 1st April that year.
The Town Council’s approved Precept for 2023-2024 was £172,300 which was the same as 2022-2023.
Summary of Budget Planning Process
Summary of Budget Planning Process
During the winter months the Town Council meet as required to discuss and decide the budget for the forthcoming financial year. The Finance Advisory Committee meet to discuss the needs and wants for the Town Council, and then recommend a draft budget to the Full Town Council.
At its meeting in November or December the Full Town Council agree the proposed budget.
Once agreed it is passed as a resolution and the District Council are then notified of the amount required as the Precept for Darley Dale.
Darley Dale Town Council runs a grant scheme that helps residents by offering practical financial support to local voluntary and community groups, clubs, local charities and not-for-profit organisations where the use can be shown to be of benefit to Darley Dale or the residents of Darley Dale.
The Council has powers to give financial aid under various statutes, notably the Local Government Act 1972:
S137: expenditure for purposes not otherwise authorised, which are considered to be in the interests of, and bringing direct benefit to, the area and its community;
S142: provision of information concerning services available;
S144: encouragement of visitors; provision of conference & other facilities;
S145: provision of entertainment or development of arts and crafts.
Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976:
S19: provision of recreational, social and sporting facilities.
There is a limited budget each year for grants and the amounts requested often exceed the fund available. It is therefore important that all the questions on the application form are answered as fully as possible to provide a detailed picture of your proposed project or of the activities of your organisation within the town.
The Council has four funding aims targeting Loneliness and Social Isolation, Youth Projects, Environmental Schemes and Health and Wellbeing. Projects addressing these aims will be given priority although any project will be considered.
Applications are accepted at any time throughout the year, and can be made for help towards a special project.
Please click hereto see examples of grant funding given to the local community.