Accounts Commission

The Accounts Commission is the public spending watchdog for local government. We hold councils in Scotland to account and help them improve.

We operate impartially and independently of councils and of the Scottish Government and we meet and report in public.

The Commission is responsible for coordinating and facilitating scrutiny in local government.
The Controller of Audit is a statutory post established alongside the Commission in 1975. The Controller reports to the Commission and highlights areas of concern.

Read more about the Commission's role, duties and powers (PDF | 47KB).

Latest news

Tribute to Douglas Sinclair

The Municipal Journal has paid tribute to Douglas Sinclair, former chair of the Accounts Commission, who sadly died recently. As well as highlighting his career, the Municipal Journal has...

Meeting Dates

  • 09Feb
  • 09Mar
  • 13Apr
  • 11May
  • 08Jun
  • 10Aug
  • 14Sep
  • 12Oct
  • 09Nov
  • 07Dec

Meetings of the Accounts Commission are open to the public. As space in our meeting venue is limited, it is helpful if you can phone ahead on 0131 625 1500. Visit our page on attending meetings for more information.

Reporting our performance 2016/17

annual reportThe Commission's annual report for 2016/17 highlights the work which has been done over the past year. Find out more on the annual report page.

Our strategy and action plan 2017/22

strategy and action planOur strategy and action plan outlines our priorities for the next five years. Ronnie Hinds, Acting Chair of the Commission, blogs about the Strategy's wider focus, and how the Commission is adapting to changes in local government.

Local government in Scotland

local government in scotlandOur annual overview report looks at the financial issues and performance and challenges facing councils in Scotland.


Commission meeting 11 May

At the start of the meeting, acting chair Ronnie Hinds paid tribute to Douglas Sinclair, who died the previous week, for his long and distinguished service to local government. Douglas had retired as chair earlier this year due to ill-health. Commission members chose Christine May as their new deputy chair until October 30. This is subject to approval by Scottish Ministers.

The main business was to consider the first of the new Best Value Assurance Reports (on Inverclyde Council). Members endorsed the recommendations made in the report and agreed to produce findings. The Commission also approved its Strategy, Engagement Strategy and Draft Annual Report. The Accounts Commission next meets on June 8.

Future work programme

work programmeThe Commission has refreshed its future work programme to capture key changes in local government spending and policy, and consultation with key stakeholders. It includes new Best Value audits and an update on health and social care integration.

Read more about the work programme.

Our work

The Commission's work covers a wide range of issues, including: