Inverness County adopts new hospitality, audit policies

PORT HOOD: Inverness County’s municipal unit adopted two new policies at last Thursday’s regular council meeting, the first meeting of council for 2019.

Although the meeting as a short one, clocking in at only 22 minutes, councillors voted to adopt a new hospitality policy and a new audit committee policy.

The purpose of the hospitality policy is four-fold: to reflect the proper use of public funds; to provide guidance for hospitality expenses; to ensure hospitality is offered in an accountable, economical and consistent manner; and to make sure taxpayer dollars are used prudently and responsibly.

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The audit committee policy is in place to protect municipal assets and manage operations as efficiently as possible.

The committee acts as an advisory board carrying out review functions on behalf of council. The primary function is to assist with oversight responsibilities related to financial reporting and ensure systems and controls are in place for recording transactions and protection of assets.

Deputy Warden Alfred Poirier asked if the policies were in accordance with the Municipal Government Act, and director of finance Tanya Tibbo pointed out all matters of that nature were taken care of.

“Prior to council receiving the policies, I sent them to municipal affairs for review and I also sent them to Maurice [Maurice Boudreau of EMM Law] for review,” she said. “They were fine. Both the solicitor and municipal affairs said they were great.”

Poirier said he was very pleased to hear that.

“We all know, in the past, there would be motions that would be approved but we didn’t know if it was in accordance with municipal affairs.” He said. “I just want to make sure everything is done according to municipal affairs guidelines.”