TOR – Finance & General Purposes Committee

(A pdf version of this policy is available for download here)

Terms of Reference 2022/23

Finance & General Purposes Committee

Composition: Seven (7) Elected members (Voting), Two (2) Substitute members (Voting)

Quorum: Four (4) members

Chairmanship: Chairman and Vice-Chairman to be elected by committee members at the first committee meeting held in each Council year.

Meetings: 6 times a year (Bi-monthly). In the event of an item of urgency, an Extra Ordinary meeting can be called in line with legislation and Council’s adopted standing orders.

Timing: 7.00pm

Venue: The Brannel Room, 22 Fore Street, St Stephen, PL26 7NN

Reports to: Full Council

Administration: The Parish Council Office

Legal Status: Governance and Accountability for Smaller Authorities in England: A Practitioners’ Guide to Proper Practices to be applied in the preparation of statutory annual accounts and governance statements 2021; Finance Act 2019; Data Protection Act 2018; General Data Protection Regulations 2018; Accounts & Audit Regulations 2015; Adopted Code of Conduct 2012; Adopted Standing Orders; Adopted Financial Regulations; Localism Act 2011; Equalities Act 2010; Local Government Act 2003; The Value Added Tax Regulations 1995; Nolan Principles of Life 1995; Local Government Act 1972; Public Bodies (Admissions to meetings) Act 1960.

Note: All Councillors not elected to the Finance & General Purposes Committee may attend public sessions and participate in the meeting but have no voting rights.

Terms of Reference including delegated matters:

  1. To consider such matters as may be delegated by the Council from time to time.
  2. To consider the Responsible Finance Officers (RFO) report on Councils annual estimates of income & expenditure (Budget) for continuing services and payments of capital expenditure for the next three financial years; and to make recommendations to Full Council on the Budget & Precept in time for the Parish Council meeting to be held in December each year.
  3. To consider forward planning and provide recommendations to Full Council for earmarked reserves levels which may include the replacement of equipment, vehicles, buildings and/or specific items of expenditure required in the future in order to lessen the precept burden in any one year.
  4. To ensure Full Council hold adequate general reserves, in line with best practice, to secure future budgets.
  5. To appoint a panel to carry out quarterly internal control checks in line with best practice and legislation.
  6. To undertake an annual risk assessment with regard to Council’s accounting procedures and processes.
  7. To consider and award grants in accordance with legislation and Councils adopted Grant Policy within the previously agreed budget.
  8. Authorisation of committee related expenditure within the budget provided that payment is made within the limit previously approved by Council. The Committee cannot commit or spend from future budgets not confirmed or from future years. The virement of funds must be authorised by Full Council.
  9. To consider the recommendations of Sub-Committees or Working (Advisory) Groups under the control of the Finance & General Purposes Committee.
  10. To assume the management responsibility of the Brannel Room including the review of fees and charges submitting recommendations for consideration by Full Council. Expenditure to be in accordance with Financial Regulations.
  11. To assume the management responsibility of the Former Sunday School also known as the Church Rooms, Nanpean including the review of rent submitting recommendations for consideration by Full Council. Expenditure to be in accordance with Financial Regulations.
  12. To assume the management responsibility of the Craft Workshops including the review of rent and submit recommendations for consideration by Full Council. Expenditure to be in accordance with Financial Regulations.
  13. To negotiate with the lessees, the terms & conditions of leases for all Parish Council property & land and submit recommendations for consideration by Full Council.
  14. To assume the management & maintenance responsibility of bus shelters & street furniture (seats, bins, notice boards, etc) within St Stephen in Brannel Parish.
  15. To consider requests for additional bus shelters and street furniture within the Parish.
  16. To assume the management & administration responsibility of the allotments including the review of fees and submit recommendations for consideration by Full Council. Expenditure to be in accordance with Financial Regulations.
  17. To assume the management & maintenance of the Parish Council car parks and submit recommendations for consideration by Full Council. Expenditure to be in accordance with Financial Regulations.
  18. To assume the management & maintenance of the public toilets in Nanpean and St Stephen and submit recommendations for consideration by Full Council. Expenditure to be in accordance with Financial Regulations.
  19. To review council policy on data management, audit the security of council held data, maintain the registers of information held and audit the security of personal data held by the council;
  20. To appoint a panel to undertake a regular audit of the council’s internal processes and procedures (similar to the Internal Audit controls currently in place) as part of management of risk. This must be reported to Full Council together with any actions taken as a result of the check.
  21. To appoint a panel to produce a data protection report at year end to Full Council as part of the management of risk process, together with the actions taken to remedy any identified deficiencies.
  22. To review the committees Terms of Reference on an annual basis for consideration by Full Council.
  23. To support the Clerk/Responsible Financial Officer (RFO) who is responsible for the proper administration of the Parish Council’s financial affairs and is responsible for the maintenance of any documents and records necessary for the effective fulfilment of the Committee’s duties as listed above.
  24. To assume the management responsibility of the cemeteries at Nanpean & St Stephen Churchtown including the review of fees and submit recommendations for consideration by Full Council. Expenditure to be in accordance with Financial Regulations.
  25. To be responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of the St Stephen Churchyard.
  26. To be responsible for the monitoring & management of the War Memorials in Nanpean and St Stephen Cemeteries
  27. Make recommendations to Full Council on all matters not within existing policy.
  28. To review strategic plan objectives, on a yearly basis, providing an update to Full Parish Council.

Any resolution made outside these Terms of Reference may be considered ultra vires and open to challenge in a Court of Law.