Inquiry into government accounts - Written evidence

April 27, 2017 10:00 AM

The House of Commons Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee have reported back on their inquiry into government accounts - and how to ensure the taxpayer can properly scrutinise them.

We are delighted that the Committee have taken several of our recommendations on board. You can read their full report here and our full submission below:

Executive summary

  • Departmental Annual Report and Accounts (ARA) ought to provide taxpayers with a clear statement of how their money is being spent and what they’re getting for it.
  • Most ARAs are currently dense and confusing for outsiders, lacking in meaningful output and performance measures, and bulked out with material not helpful in scrutinising value for money.
  • HM Treasury’s 2014 proposals for restructuring ARAs offer an attractive way forward.
  • The Performance section of the proposed new ARA should be structured around the services delivered to taxpayers rather than around departmental organisation. Output and performance numbers should appear alongside cost indicators allowing an assessment of overall value. Where possible benchmark comparisons should be included.
  • Output, performance, and cost indicators presented in ARAs should correspond to those used in internal management information systems. 

Read the full submission here

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