Bid to simplify authorities’ accounts ‘should go further’

By MJ reporter | 12 April 2016

A senior council finance chief has questioned the success of efforts to make local government accounts shorter, simpler and more relevant to the public.

Speaking after limited changes were made to the guidance for 2016/17, the Society of London Treasurers president, Chris Buss, criticised the pace of progress.

The changes, introduced after a major wide-ranging review led by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA), include a new requirement for local authorities to produce an expenditure and funding analysis aimed at an ‘informed layperson’.

Mr Buss’ accounts at Wandsworth LBC – where he is director of finance – have already grown from 30 pages including notes in 2005/6 to 155 pages last year.

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