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A History of British National AuditThe Pursuit of Accountability$
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David Dewar and Warwick Funnell

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198790310

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198790310.001.0001

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The 1866 Audit Act and the Modern State

The 1866 Audit Act and the Modern State

(p.106) 6 The 1866 Audit Act and the Modern State
A History of British National Audit

David Dewar

Warwick Funnell

Oxford University Press

The 1866 Audit Act gave effect to all the recommendations of the highly influential report of the Select Committee on Public Monies in 1856. It required the preparation of annual appropriation accounts for all departmental supply grants, based on the strict cash basis of sums that had actually been paid during the financial year. It required the Treasury to introduce a revised framework of accounts and accounting systems. The Act merged the Audit and Exchequer Offices under the Comptroller and Auditor General, with powers to carry out annual audits of the appropriation accounts and other accounts on behalf of the House of Commons, and to report the results. It provided statutory safeguards for the C&AG’s position and that of his auditors and provided the basis for extending the audit, even without specific statutory authority into examinations of value for money and stores provisioning.

Keywords:   1866 Audit Act, Select Committee on Public Monies, Exchequer and Audit Offices, appropriation accounts, Treasury, Comptroller and Auditor General

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