Youth Justice Agency governance

Governance arrangements within the Youth Justice Agency including register of board members and the Youth Justice Agency audit committee membership and remit.

Organisational structure

The Chief Executive is directly accountable to the Minister for the Agency's performance. He is supported in discharging the day to day responsibilities by a Management Board, which comprises:

  • Director of Youth Justice Services
  • Director of Custody
  • Director of Corporate Services
  • two Independent Board Members

The current top management structure is as follows:

Role Member
Chief Executive Declan McGeown
Director Youth Justice Services Mary Aughey
Director Juvenile Justice Centre Brian Ingram
Director Corporate Services Jill Brown (acting)
Independent Board Member David Brown
Independent Board Member Sarah Havlin

Register of board members interests

The Agency maintains a Register of Board Members Interests which is available on request. Where a Board member or employee is connected to a party involved in the supply of goods or services to the Agency, this information will be fully disclosed in the Annual Report and Accounts of the Agency.

Youth Justice Agency Audit Committee

The Agency's Audit Committee is chaired by Sarah Havlin, Independent Board Member. The terms of reference for the Audit Committee are replicated below.

Role

The Accounting Officer has established an Audit Committee to support him in his responsibility for issues of risk, control and governance by reviewing the comprehensiveness of assurances in meeting the Agency’s assurance needs and reviewing the reliability and integrity of these assurances.

Membership

The members of the Audit Committee are:

Role Member(s)
Independent Board Members Sarah Havlin; David Brown
Independent Representative Jacqui Durkin
Chair Sarah Havlin

In attendance

The following will also normally attend Audit Committee meetings:-

Representing YJA                     

  • Chief Executive
  • Director, Corporate Services
  • Director, Custodial Services
  • Director, Youth Justice Services
  • Head of FMS
  • Accountant
  • Head of Information/Data Systems

External representatives           

  • Head of Internal Audit
  • NI Audit Office representative

Note:- the Audit Committee may as required procure specialist ad-hoc advice at the expense of the organisation, subject to budgets agreed by the Management Board.

Reporting

The Audit Committee will provide the Management Board and Accounting Officer with an annual report, timed to support finalisation of the accounts and the Statement on Internal Control, summarising its conclusions from the work it has done during the year.

Responsibilities

The objectives of the committee are to advise the Accounting Officer on:-

  • the Agency’s risk management process and preparation and updating of the risk management framework
  • the adequacy of arrangements for internal control and risk management including the preparation of the Statement of Internal Control
  • the accounting policies, the accounts and the annual report of the organisation, including the process for review of the accounts prior to submission for audit, levels or error identified and management’s letter of representation to the external auditors
  • planned activity of internal audit and external audit
  • the results of internal and external audit activity including ensuring appropriate action has been taken
  • assurances relating to the corporate governance requirements for the organisation
  • anti-fraud policies, whistle blowing processes and arrangements for special investigations
  • the Audit Committee will also periodically review its own effectiveness and report the results of that review to the Management Board

Access

The Head of Internal Audit and the representative of External Audit will have free and confidential access to the Chair of the Audit Committee.

Meetings

Committee meetings will be held on a quarterly basis.  The Chair of the Audit Committee may convene additional meetings, as they deem necessary.

A minimum of 2 members of the Audit Committee will be present for the meeting to be deemed quorate.

The Audit Committee may ask other officials of the organisation to attend to assist it with its discussions on any particular matter.

The Audit Committee may ask any or all of those who normally attend but who are not members to withdraw to facilitate open and frank discussion of particular matters.

Papers

All papers for consideration by the committee should be received by members 5 working days in advance of the meeting.

Information requirements

The Audit Committee will be provided with:-

  • a report summarising any significant change to the organisations risk register
  • a progress report from the Head of Internal Audit summarising:
    • work performed (and a comparison with work planned)
    • key issues emerging from Internal Audit work
    • management response to audit recommendations
    • changes to periodic plan
    • any resourcing issues affecting the delivery of Internal Audit objectives.
  • A progress report from the External Audit representative summarising work done and emerging findings.
  • As appropriate:
    • proposals for the Terms of Reference of Internal Audit
    • the Internal Audit Strategy
    • the Head of Internal Audit’s Annual Opinion and Report
    • Quality Assurance reports on the internal audit function
    • the draft accounts of the organisation
    • the draft Statement of Internal Control
    • a report on any changes to accounting policies
    • external Audit’s management letter
    • a report on any proposals to tender for audit functions
    • a report on co-operation between Internal and External Audit
    • internal Assurance reports/action plan updates

Review

These terms of reference for the committee will be reviewed as required.

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