Does Your Council Need a Financial Health Check?
Joe Winter, Head of BD, Comms and Marketing and Philip Simpkins, Ex Bedford Borough Council Chief Executive, qualified accountant and experienced S151 officer discuss the reasons why councils should conduct an independent review of their financial position.
What could a financial health check achieve?
“An independent review can determine the support needed to achieve long term financial ambitions and would highlight whether future assumptions are realistic.”
What will the impact of Covid-19 have on Mid Term Financial Plans (MTFP’s)?
“MTFP’s need to be robust, regularly reviewed and updated. With auditors looking at Going Concern together with the impact of COVID a Council’s MTFP’s, healthy revenue and capital have never been more critical.”
What income streams should be reviewed?
“A financial health check would look at Council Tax projections, Business Rate projections, New Homes Bonus, trading activities and commercial returns, and how Covid-19 has affected these.”
What will the impact be on expenditure?
“The priorities set by Councils on where and how they spend their money need to be underpinned by good relationship management with suppliers and contractors. We all know that assumptions based on pre-Covid conditions are now likely to be incorrect.”
What do we need to create good financial strategy and management?
“Member and officer relationships need to be strong and empowering; this is the building block for ensuring continued financial health.
… Councils should consider the benefits of an independently hosted workshop to review their priorities and to ensure all members/officers are in agreement and focused on the way forward.”
Could your organisation benefit from a Financial Health Check or an independently hosted workshop?