Date: 14 September 2023

Time: 14:00

Venue: MS Teams


  • Judith Paterson (Interim Co-Chair)
  • Dr Mark Simpson (Interim Co-Chair)

In attendance—

  • Stephen Herbert, Secretary
  • Lisa Kinnear, SCoSS Administrative Assistant
  • Graeme Hill, Audit Adviser, SCoSS
  • Lisa Duthie, Senior Audit Manager, Audit Scotland;


No interests were declared.

The Minutes of the June 2023 meeting of the Audit Sub-Committee were approved.

The Audit Adviser provided an update and highlighted that he was content with the preparations that had been made in advance of the 2022-23 audit and, in particular, with the Finance Accounts Working Papers and the draft Annual Report and Accounts.  He also noted that the bi-monthly meetings between the Secretariat, Finance and Sponsor Unit had improved the monitoring of SCoSS finances.  In particular, this had resulted in improved processes with regard to checking Members’ fee claims and the identification of issues in relation to staff cost accruals.  The Audit Adviser also noted that the Sponsor Unit were taking forward a range of actions to improve the service provided by Finance to SCoSS.

The Audit Sub-Committee noted the performance and assurance update.

The Audit Adviser highlighted that the Secretariat and the Audit Adviser were recommending that an additional risk be added to the risk register relating to budget pressures.  In particular, it was noted that the current budget forecast indicated that the 2023-24 budget would be close to being fully committed.  In addition, there was uncertainty regarding the accuracy of the staff costs forecast being provided by Finance.  It was considered that once the 2022-23 pay settlement began to feature in the SCoSS budget figures in November that a more accurate assessment of the overall budget position could be made.

The Sub-Committee discussed the budget position and agreed that it may be necessary to hold an additional Sub-Committee meeting in November to take stock of the budgetary position at that point.

The Audit Sub-Committee agreed that an additional risk regarding budget pressures be added to the risk register for consideration at the next meeting of the SCoSS Board.

The Sub-Committee considered and agreed a draft Governance Statement which will form part of the unaudited Annual Report and Accounts that would be submitted to Audit Scotland before 26 September 2023.

The Secretariat provided a paper for this agenda item stating that there had been no losses or special payments since the previous meeting in June.  The Audit Sub-Committee noted the position.

The timetable for the formal external audit was discussed and it was noted that the Secretariat would be sending a draft of the Annual Report and Accounts to the Members of the Sub-Committee and the Accountable Officer for comment before submission to Audit Scotland.

The meeting closed at 14:59.

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