Statutory duties and powers in respect of local public audit
Schedule 6 of the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014 makes the Comptroller and Auditor General responsible for the preparation, publication and maintenance of the Code of Audit Practice. The Code sets out what local auditors are required to do to fulfil their statutory responsibilities under the Act 2014. Local auditors must comply with the Code of Audit Practice.
Schedule 6 of the Act puts a range of requirements in place in respect of the Comptroller and Auditor General’s responsibility for the Code. These include duties to consult publicly and obtain Parliament’s approval for the Code prior to publication, to keep the Code under review and to use reasonable endeavours to prepare and publish a new code approximately every five years.
Schedule 6 of the Act provides the Comptroller and Auditor General with the power to issue guidance to auditors on the exercise of their duties under the Act. In particular, such guidance may explain or supplement the provisions of the Code of Audit Practice. Local auditors are required to have regard to such guidance.
The Comptroller and Auditor General is a prescribed person to whom whistleblowers can make protected disclosures under the Public Interest Disclosure Act 2008. With the closure of the Audit Commission, the Government widened the Comptroller and Auditor General’s remit as a prescribed person. Rather than receiving disclosures relating only to central government services, the Comptroller and Auditor General can now receive disclosures relating to the proper conduct of public business, value for money, fraud and corruption in relation to the provision of all public services. Please note that prescribed person status does not confer additional investigatory powers on that person beyond those in place for the exercise of their core functions.
To find out more information or to make a disclosure please visit our whistleblowing webpage which provides contact details including for our dedicated whistleblowing hotline.