7.1.1 The Council provides a distinctive leadership role for the community and brings together the contributions of the various stakeholders. It must also act to achieve the promotion or improvement of the economic, social or environmental well-being of its area.
7.1.2 All partnerships and joint working arrangements with outside bodies must be properly evaluated for risk before they are entered into, and be supported by clear governance, accounting and audit arrangements.
7.1.3 External funding can prove an important source of income but funding conditions must be carefully examined before any agreement is entered into to ensure they are compatible with the aims and objectives of Council.
7.1.4 Legislation enables the Council to trade and provide services to third parties. All such work must be within the legal powers of the council (intra vires) and the respective risks and financial benefits associated with such work must be properly considered and a business case approved before any trading activities take place.
7.2 Cabinet is responsible for approving delegations, including frameworks for partnerships. Cabinet is the focus for forming partnerships with other local public, private, voluntary and community sector organisations to address local needs. It is responsible for approving the contractual arrangements for any work for third parties or external bodies.
7.3 The Section 151 Officer is responsible for ensuring that all funding notified by external bodies is accepted (or refused), received and properly recorded in the council’s accounts.
7.4 Cabinet can delegate functions, including those relating to partnerships to officers. They are set out in the Scheme of Delegation that forms part of the Council’s Constitution. Where functions are delegated, Cabinet remains accountable for them to the Full Council.
7.5 The Head of Paid Service or an officer nominated by him represents the council on partnership and external bodies in accordance with the Scheme of Delegation.
7.6 The Monitoring Officer is responsible for promoting and maintaining the same high standards of conduct with regard to financial affairs in partnerships that apply throughout the council.
7.7 The Section 151 Officer must ensure that the accounting and auditing arrangements to be adopted relating to partnerships, joint ventures and accountable bodies are satisfactory. They must also consider the overall corporate governance arrangements when arranging contracts with external bodies. They must ensure that the risks have been fully appraised before agreements are entered into with external bodies.
7.8 Directors and managers are responsible for ensuring that appropriate approvals are obtained before any negotiations are concluded in relation to work with external bodies.