Sunday, 5 August 2012

Richmond Council opens its books

Richmond Council’s annual accounts are available once again for residents to see how it spends public money.

In addition to publishing details of all expenditure over £500 and answering numerous questions from members of the public on financial issues, the Council has opened its accounts dated up to 31 March 2012 for all to see for a month from 20th July to Friday 17th August between 09.00am and 4.30pm. Appointments can be made to see them at the Civic Centre in Twickenham.

Cllr Geoffrey Samuel, Richmond Council’s Deputy Leader, said:

“We continue with our pledge to spend Council taxpayers’ money as carefully as if it were our own. This is an ideal opportunity for people to take an in-depth look into our accounts and see exactly what we do with their money.

“Transparency is the foundation for a strong local democracy as it allows residents and other interested parties to delve into the ins and outs of the Council’s coffers. We are very clear about where the money goes and that residents are informed on how it is spent.”

Among other documents, residents will be able to request details of Council members’ expense claims and salary levels for senior members of staff. They will also be able view documents showing that Richmond upon Thames receives the lowest level of Revenue Support Grant from Government of any Council in London and breakdowns of the budgets which individual departments are given.

People who wish to view the accounts or ask questions of the auditor can do so by e-mailing or by calling the finance department on 020 8891 7172. In addition to the month-long opening of the accounts, the Council is happy to answer questions on spending from residents at any time of the year.  Please note that, under the regulations, whilst any member of the public is entitled to view the accounts only local residents are allowed to meet with the auditor. 

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