Pioneering year of engagement - National Assembly for Wales Assembly Commission publishes Annual Report and Accounts for 2018-19
The Assistant Auditor General for Wales has certified the Assembly Commission’s accounts for the year ended 31 March 2019.
Following the annual audit by the Wales Audit Office, an unqualified audit opinion has been issued and no recommendations have been raised. The auditors found the Commission’s accounting practices and financial reporting to be reliable, comparable and easy to understand.
The Assembly Commission’s Audit Risk and Assurance Committee praised the report and accounts, noting the high levels of assurance provided throughout by Commission staff and the clear and accessible presentation of information.
The Accounts are published today alongside the Commission’s annual report detailing its achievements over the course of the year.
The Annual Report highlights include:
the introduction of the Commission’s Senedd and Elections (Wales) Bill which gives the Assembly the power to change its name to Senedd, reflecting its constitutional status as a parliament and to reduce the minimum voting age for Assembly elections to 16 from 2021;
the significant work carried out by the Assembly to respond to the unique Welsh challenges around Brexit;
the establishment of a new democratically elected Welsh Youth Parliament of 60 young people aged between 11-18;
how the Assembly hosted events of national and international sporting and cultural significance such as the National Eisteddfod and celebratory homecomings for Geraint Thomas and the grand slam winning Welsh rugby team.
The report also pays tribute to former Assembly Member Steffan Lewis who passed away in January 2019.
The annual report also details achievements in areas including:
Diversity and Inclusion
For the fifth year running, the Assembly is among the top five employers of LGBT staff in the UK and was named as the top Welsh employer in the latest annual Stonewall Workplace Equality Index.
Environment and Sustainability
Surpassing our target of a 30% reduction in energy emissions two years in advance of the 2020/2021 ambition and the introduction of beehives and a wider biodiversity programme on the Assembly’s estate to encourage pollinators and other insects to flourish.
Official Languages Scheme
Transforming the way we set language skills levels when determining job requirements. The way we consider language skills is now more refined giving us the opportunity to celebrate and recognise skills at all levels.
Assembly Commission staff helped deliver our new organisational values – respect, pride and passion - over the past twelve months.
Elin Jones AM, Llywydd of the National Assembly for Wales said:
“This has been a pioneering year for the Assembly, particularly in terms of engagement.
“Our Youth Parliament has made progress with pace, we have introduced legislation to lower the voting age to 16 in time for the next Welsh elections, and our exciting programme for marking 20 years of devolution – including our commitment to hold Wales’s first ever Citizens’ Assembly this year – is reaching out to new audiences in all parts of the nation.
“A particular highlight was chairing the first Plenary session of the Welsh Youth Parliament. The Members’ brave and moving contributions, as well as their obvious determination to engage with young people across Wales about their top three issues over the coming years – mental health and wellbeing, life skills and plastic waste - was inspiring.”
Chief Executive and Clerk of the National Assembly for Wales, Manon Antoniazzi, said:
“As Commission staff, we take pride in our work, feel passionate about our opportunities to make a difference and respect each other: values that have guided us through a busy and eventful period.”
“The design and delivery of our Youth Parliament was a significant highlight of the year and I echo the Llywydd’s tribute to 60 youth parliament Members who have made their mark on the political landscape so quickly and so effectively.”
“Many of the uncertainties that faced us at the start of this period remain and resolving them successfully will test us all over the coming months. However, I am more confident than ever that the Commission has the resources, skills, values and collective ambition to deliver all that is required of it.”
Read the full report:
Annual Report and Accounts: 2018-19 (PDF, 10 MB)