Council votes to accept Audit Office recommendations

Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council has voted to accept all eight recommendations presented in the Northern Ireland Audit Office Extraordinary Audit report.

Work will now get underway on an associated action plan in line with the timeframe set out by the Department for Communities.

Council acknowledges the work carried out by the Northern Ireland Audit Office on the matter to date and will continue to work closely with the Department to ensure that all recommendations are fully implemented.

During a Special Council Meeting held on Tuesday, July 26, the following proposal was put forward by Councillor Padraig McShane, and seconded by Councillor Stephanie Quigley: “That this Council accepts the findings contained within the extraordinary audit. That this Council immediately moves to implement all eight recommendations contained within the extraordinary Audit. That the Ministerial letter of 7th July be responded to confirming all the above and an action plan be completed by 8th August 2022 that shows how the Auditor’s recommendations will be fully implemented by 30th December 2022.”

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Further to this, Councillor John McAuley added: “We note the established mechanism for investigating questions of discipline raised in connection with a Chief Executive of a local authority in Northern Ireland. This mechanism is specified in the 1996 Agreement on Discipline, Capability and Redundancy of the Joint Negotiating Committee for Clerks/Chief Executives to Local Authorities in Northern Ireland.

“Paragraphs 3 to 11 of that agreement establish the process to be followed and we call on Council to incorporate this approach as part of its response to Recommendations 6 and 7, whilst also recognising that distinct disciplinary processes may exist for other local government employees.

“We also request that Council seek regular and detailed cooperation with the Local Government Staff Commission of Northern Ireland in respect of any relevant matters arising from the Audit Report recommendations and their implementation.” Both proposals taken together were unanimously agreed.

Further information about the meeting is available by going to https://www.causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk/council/minutes/26-july-2022-special-council-meeting