The Council recognises that a key preventative measure in the fight against fraud, theft and corruption is to take effective steps at the recruitment stage to establish as far as possible, the previous record of potential staff, in terms of their propriety and integrity. Temporary and contract staff should be treated in the same manner as permanent staff.
Staff recruitment must be in accordance with approved employee selection policies and, in particular, the Council will seek to obtain written references on the honesty and integrity of candidates before employment offers are made. Criminal Record Checks are made where appropriate.
Each employee is governed in his or her work by:
- The Council’s Standing Orders
- Financial Regulations
- The Code of Conduct for Employees
- Employment Contract and Handbook, together with the suite of policies our employees read and sign at the start of their employment
- Gifts and Hospitality Register
Employees are expected always to be aware of the possibility that fraud, corruption or theft may exist in the workplace and be able to share their concerns with management.
Members are required to operate within:
- The Constitution — this sets out responsibility for functions and contains:
- Council’s Standing Orders
- Members’ Code of Conduct
- Section 106 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992
- Local Government legislation
These matters are specifically brought to the attention of Members in the Members’ Manual and include the declaration and registration of interests with the Monitoring Officer, potential areas of conflict between Members’ Council duties and responsibilities, and any other areas of their personal or professional lives.
The Members Code of Conduct was approved by the Council and the Standards Committee. This Committee have responsibility for maintaining high standards of conduct by Members of this council.
The Council has Financial Regulations in place that require staff, when dealing with the Council’s affairs, to act in accordance with best practice.
The Section 151 Officer has statutory responsibility under the Local Government Act 1972 to ensure the proper arrangements of the Council’s financial affairs and has developed Financial Codes of Practice and Accounting Instructions, which outline the system.
The Monitoring Officer has a statutory responsibility under Section 5 of the Local Government Housing Act 1989 for monitoring the conduct of the Council’s business.
The Council has developed, and is committed to continuing with, systems and procedures which incorporate efficient and effective internal controls and which include adequate separation of duties. Strategic Management Team has to ensure that these controls are properly maintained and documented. Their existence and appropriateness is independently monitored by SWAP.
Working with other agencies
There are arrangements in place to encourage the exchange of information between the Council and other agencies on national and local fraud, theft and corruption activity in relation to Local Authorities.
- Cabinet Office
- HM Revenues and Customs
- Other Local Authorities