Thanet District Council has tonight considered and unanimously agreed to the four recommendations set out in the external auditor, Grant Thornton’s report published on 12 October 2021.
The recommendations include:
- Commissioning an experienced, independent Monitoring Officer from a large local authority to report to the General Purposes Committee on:
- A risk assessment of the current employment tribunal claims and proposed actions which safeguard the Council’s best interests including a detailed financial analysis of the options available to the Council.
- An assessment of the status of all outstanding grievances, alleged whistleblowing complaints and any continuing suspensions and propose a plan of action to address them.
- Lessons learnt report collating themes and recommendations from all externally commissioned reports and any other appropriate evidence.
- Bringing the current Investigations & Disciplinary Sub Committee’s process to a conclusion with clear actions that are reported and action monitored.
- Revisiting the financial plans and identifying additional savings plans to address the further cost pressures created in resolving the grievances and whistleblowing complaints.
- Agreeing an approach where the Council demonstrates that it is responding to the substance of concerns raised including a clear agreement on where Officer and Member responsibilities lie.
Leader of Thanet District Council, Cllr Ash Ashbee said:
“It is only right and proper that Councillors have had the opportunity to ask questions of the external auditor, agree to its recommendations and be a part of the process.
“When I was elected as Leader, I made it clear that good governance is the cornerstone of effective local government. Tonight’s unanimous decision is the first step towards us building a sound future for this council.”
The Council will make public its action plan in due course and continue to provide updates to Councillors and the external auditor.