Scottish councils lose more than £120m due to ‘weak’ financial controls

By William Eichler | 11 April 2019

Systems to prevent public money being lost to mistakes and fraud in local government ‘may be under strain,’ a watchdog has warned.

A new report by the Accounts Commission found ‘recurring weaknesses’ in the financial safeguards used by Scottish local authorities.

It said these weaknesses were apparent in information processing, reviews and separating council employees' duties in order to prevent fraud.

The auditors said that if financial controls were improved then councils could save £124m of public money. 

Chair of the Accounts Commission, Graham Sharp, said: ‘Councillors are ultimately responsible for scrutinising a council's use of public money, and they should seek assurances from council officers that rigorous systems and processes are in place to safeguard finances.’

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