Our attention has been drawn to a conflict between the wording of the Certificate of Exemption in Part 2 of the AGAR and the Regulations governing eligibility for exemption from external audit. This may affect councils which have only been in existence for a few years.
The Certificate of Exemption (for 2018/19) states that a council has been in existence since ‘before’ 1 April 2015. This is not correct. The requirement in the Regulations is that 2018/19 is not one of the first three years of the council’s existence. So a council which came into existence on 1 April 2015, perhaps following a community governance review, was in existence for 2015/16, 2016/17 and 2017/18 and so is eligible (if the other conditions are satisfied) to certify as exempt from external audit. RFOs whose councils are affected can amend the wording of the Certificate of Exemption to reflect this before submitting the Certificate to their external auditor (and publishing it).
The wording will be corrected in the AGAR for 2019/20.