Is this fraud? Or paranoia?
URPC, appear to have some very strange accounting procedures, which require further explanation to the public, otherwise fraud could be suspected.
M. Flint asked on the meeting of the 11th October a question about £650 with respect to a proposed tree survey in relation to a land being acquired by Grainger’s.
The Acting Clerks replied that the spend was authorised at the August meeting. If this was correct it should have appeared on the October payments list. Unfortunately, this statement was incorrect as it appeared retrospectively on a revised payment for the September Minutes and was now attached to the Draft Minutes after the event. I repeat, appeared after the meeting. Talk about digging your own grave. We want URPC to succeed, but these practices are just wrong.
If you listen Audio of the meeting on 13 September 2017 at approximately the 48 minute point, the tree survey money is discussed. The chairman, Brian Hanks says he did not THINK a quote was needed for the work. A bizarre statement from a Chairman saying he didn’t think (he should know or report later when he does know), if you intent to spend £650, quotes are required before authorisation. The discussion was not to authorise a spend, only to discus possible quotes.
Therefore, I will mention this again, it was discussed, and then miraculously appears on a payment list AFTER the meeting. There isn’t an explanation that is mentioned in any NALC publication to cover this procedure.
You will also note there are missing LGA No’s on the payments list presented to the public, which again is an incorrect practice.
Furthermore, you will have noticed that cheques are not signed in public, which is the incorrect procedure, it leads the council open to possible fraud, imagine the £650 cheque mentioned above that appeared after the meeting, it could have been written for ANY amount – not £650, but thousands. The correct procedure is to sign in public, if there is revised legislation then I will stand corrected.
Finally, TBA amounts on Payments Lists are very inappropriate when dealing with public monies. Cllr Laird has her own expenses listed on one list as TBA and then it disappears on another (see lists below) either she has spent money or she has not. This practice does not give you that warm and fuzzy feeling. TBA is not an open and transparent procedure.
You will also notice huge discrepancies amounting to over £2000 between the two lists below for the same meeting. A very unacceptable practice I am sure you will agree.
In summary, the same two people are involved in unapproved practices, the ACTING CLERK & the CHAIRMAN.