Bristol City Council’s quarterly internal audit report into its financial management is out and the news, as usual, is uniformly bad. The council’s own assessment of its management of our money remains ‘of concern’ – as it has been for over two years now. Will it ever end?
Highlights in this dismal report in to serial organisational incompetence include:
“Non-compliance with Procurement Regulations is wide spread”
In other words contacts are dished out to friends, family, acquaintances, former employees, people from the golf club etc.
“Poor contracts monitoring has been identified as the cause of large overspends”
Once they’ve awarded contracts to their mates nobody bothers to enforce the terms of the contracts. Any old crap’s good enough for Bristolians
“Failure to monitor adherence to contracts [means] poor value for money”
Not bothering to enforce the terms of these contracts is costing us all dear except the lucky recipients of these unmonitored anything-goes contract arrangements.
“Inadequate strategic overview of engagement and use of consultants”
Highly paid consultants are employed at the drop of a hat to do the work that the highly paid managers aren’t capable of doing.
“Internal Audit recommendations are not actioned within a reasonable time frame”
When dodgy financial arrangements and deals are uncovered fuck all is done about it.
Bank Reconciliation and Cheque Control – OF CONCERN
The amount of cash and money that should be coming in to the council is not cross checked with the amount of cash and money that is coming in to the council. A free-for-all for embezzlers!
“Markets Operation – OF CONCERN”
Almost one year after £165k ‘disappeared’ without trace from the Markets Service and, still, nobody knows what’s going on with our money in that department; nobody’s doing anything about it and nobody’s responsible.
“Material income misappropriation”
Or theft as it’s generally known. This is thought to be a separate issue to the missing £165k in Markets. More news on this as we get it …
And the response to this theft of our money?
“Action plan under development”
Because that’s what you do when you realise a load of money’s been nicked isn’t it? Obviously you don’t report it to the police and try and catch the culprits …
“Payroll – OF CONCERN”
Yep. You read that correctly. Even the payroll’s fucked.
“Direct Payments – OF CONCERN”
The system of handing money over to health and social care clients to buy their own services is, predictably, in chaos
“Administration of Imprest [ie. cash] Account – Identified areas of noncompliance”
More bent managers running dodgy financial systems open to embezzlement. Now why would they do that?
Significant number of fraud referrals during first quarter is concerning
Yes, it’s actually getting worse folks … Full report here (pdf).