Agenda item

Somerset West and Taunton Council Statement of Accounts 2021/2022

This matter is the responsibility of the Portfolio Holder for Communications and Corporate Resources, Cllr Benet Allen.


Report Author: John Dyson, Corporate Finance Manager


To consider the Somerset West and Taunton Council Statement of Accounts for 2021/22 (Appendix A) and a draft Management Letter of Representation (Appendix B). 


This report also links to and reflects the Audit Findings Report, prepared by the Council’s external auditors – Grant Thornton UK LLP. Through the course of the audit, a range of amendments have been identified for correction within the accounts.  A schedule of these is set out in the Audit Findings Report, which has been tabled earlier in the meeting of this Committee.  


John Dyson, Corporate Finance Manager introduced the report:


·       Confirmed that his earlier presentation for agenda item 8 covered the matters relating to the Statement of Accounts.

·       I would also like to point out that within the statement of accounts that have been issued the balance sheet assumes that will be signed as of today i.e. 7 November 2022 and the statement of responsibilities likewise, and that when we have gone through the process of applying the statutory override we will be changing the dates of those two statements.


During the debate, discussion took place around:


·       Page 184 note 15 and whether minus investment property figure of £1,150k in 2020/21 was a loss and whether the figure of minus £5,754k in 2021/22 was a bigger loss than the previous year.  The officer confirmed that a negative represents a credit and therefore in this instance it was positive income.  The figures show that the Council received more rental income in 2021/22 than in 2020/21.

·       Page 190 shows a figure of £4,570 listed as short term creditors.  The officer was asked to give an example of who a short term creditor is.  The officer confirmed that a short term creditor arises where the Council owes money to businesses as at the 31March 2022, but where it will be paid in less than twelve months

·       What the Council’s standard payment terms are when an invoice is received from a business.  The officer confirmed that our standard payment terms are 30 days unless the arrangement with the business stipulates something different.

·       Whether the Council pays businesses quickly to support them during the cost of living crisis.  The officer confirmed that there was a push during the pandemic to pay invoices in the next payment run once the invoice had been confirmed as valid.  We now do one or two payment runs a week to ensure that businesses are paid in a timely manner.  A Councillor confirmed that the Council’s approach had been well received by local businesses during the pandemic.  


The Committee resolved to approve the recommendations in the report plus an addition recommendation (d):


The Committee is recommended to:

a.    Note the Auditor’s unqualified opinion on the Statement of Accounts (Appendix A) – this remains subject to an update on the matter of a statutory override regarding the accounting treatment of Infrastructure Assets under the CIPFA Code of Practice

b.    Either approve the 2021/2022 Statements of Accounts as attached to this report (Appendix A – as updated as per recommendation d below) or, if Somerset West and Taunton Council must await conclusion of the statutory override, delegate final approval of the 2021/2022 Statement of Accounts to the Chairman of the Committee, in consultation with the Vice Chairman and the Assistant Director – Finance (S151 Officer)

c.     Endorse the Chairman of the Committee to sign the Management Letter of Representation (Appendix B) in respect of the financial statements for the year ended 31st March 2022.

d.    The Balance Sheet (Page 17 of the Statement of Accounts or Page 144 of the agenda pack) is amended, as follows:


Balance Sheet Line

Originally Reported

Updated to







Other land and Buildings




Unusable Reserves





And that the following notes will be amended for this adjustment:

·       Comprehensive Income and Expenditure Statement (Page 15)

·       Movement in Reserves Statement (Page 16)

·       Note 14 (Pages 50 and 56)

·       Note 25 (Pages 71 and 72)


(proposed Cllr Simon Coles; seconded Cllr Janet Lloyd)


The Chair and Committee thanked the Finance Team for their work on the Statement of Accounts.

Supporting documents: