Legacy Report 2011-2016
Session: Session currently unavailable
Date: 23 March 2016
Reference: NIA 334/11-16
Mandate Number: 2011-2016
PAC-2011-2016-legacy-report.pdf (1.02 mb)
Key outputs and achievements
Since May 2011, the Public Accounts Committee has produced 34 inquiry reports and 6 other reports including end of session reports and Excess Votes.
Value for Money/Efficiency and Effectiveness Reports
The bulk of the Committee’s work is its inquiries into case studies into value for money and or efficiency and effectiveness of public spending. The C&AG’s case study reports demonstrate audit findings and the Committee then assesses the impact of these before prioritising them for its forward work plan.
In the 2011-2016 Assembly Mandate, the Committee has examined practice in many Government departments, reporting on various issues such as the use of agency staff and external consultants; Public Private Partnerships (PPP); major capital projects; fraud; whistleblower complaints; and conflicts of interest.
The Committee took a strategic approach to its work, prioritising the inquiries it chose to conduct according to the significance of spending decisions, the impact and wide application of lessons learned in the public sector as a whole, the need to represent the work of all departments in the scrutiny material of the Committee, and the benefit its inquiries could accrue for the taxpayer.
The Committee reiterated in its recommendations the need for:
- clearly defined responsibilities and accountability lines for spending decisions;
- good guidance that is regularly refreshed and actively circulated;
- adherence to control processes even when time and other pressures militate against it;
- regard to expert advice in tendering and specification to balance public/private sector risk;
- high ethical standards, with particular regard to conflicts of interest, so that public spending can be seen to be beyond reproach;
- the need to promote good practice in respect of whistleblowers in public service (which has been highlighted in DFP guidance issued to Accounting Officers); and
- the need to strengthen the investigative skills within the public sector with regard to public sector fraud and in particular the establishment of single public sector fraud investigation service which has now been established by DFP.
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