The UK’s Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has appointed Neil Harris as its first director of local audit.

Harris will be responsible for creating a new local audit unit ahead of the FRC becoming the convener for local authority financial reporting when it transforms to the Audit, Reporting and Governance Authority (ARGA).

In its response to Tony Redmond’s independent review of local authority audit and reporting, the UK Government proposed ARGA would take on a convenor role for local audit.

Commenting on his appointment, Harris said: “High quality local authority financial reporting and audit is vital to ensure taxpayers have trust in local authority accounts. I look forward to meeting with the wide variety of stakeholders who are involved in local authority reporting and working with partner organisations to develop a new local audit unit ahead of the FRC taking on the convenor role.”

FRC executive director of supervision Sarah Rapson said: “I am delighted that Neil has now joined the FRC as our first Director of Local Audit. He brings significant local audit experience and an in-depth understanding of the complex stakeholder landscape that supports local authority reporting. Neil will play a pivotal role in bringing together key partners, laying the groundwork for the establishment of a convenor role and taking forward many of the recommendations of the Redmond review. The delivery of high quality, timely and effective financial reporting is of fundamental importance.”