Bill on resource accounting unveiled

25 Nov 99
The government has published the bill detailing its move to resource accounting, describing the changes as the 'biggest reform and modernisation programme since the Gladstone era'.

26 November 1999

It confirmed that central government is to adopt the financial reporting practices prevalent in the private sector and much of the public sector.

Once the Government Resources and Accounts Bill becomes law, each department will be able to create a balance sheet and the equivalent of a profit and loss account.

By 2004/05 it should be possible to move to a 'Whole of Government Accounts' approach, producing a consolidated and audited set of financial statements for all the public sector. These can then be used to plan and control public spending.

'Resource accounting and budgeting is a vital part of our modernising agenda and this bill marks a major milestone on our way to full implementation,' said Andrew Smith, the chief secretary to the Treasury. 'It demonstrates the government's commitment to introducing best-practice accounting methods.'

The bill details how departments will account for appropriations-in-aid on an accruals rather than a cash basis. Other clauses cover modernisation of the consolidated fund, the role of the comptroller and auditor general and the extension of computerisation.


Did you enjoy this article?