‘Significant failures of corporate governance’ at Northampton BC may have been unlawful, an auditor has found in a public interest report.
The council agreed in 2013 to provide a loan to Northampton Town FC to overhaul its stadium at Sixfields and to buy nearby land in a joint venture with a third party to develop the site.
However, loan payments ceased in 2015, with £10.2m outstanding, after the club failed to pay building contractors, with administration or liquidation looming.
External auditor KPMG concluded in a public interest report that senior officers may have acted unlawfully.
It found loans to the club were authorised by officers in excess of the £12m agreed by members, although the amount handed over totalled £10.25m.
In addition, the use of delegated powers did not meet attached conditions to protect the council financially.
A spokesperson for the council said that many of the report’s recommendations have already been addressed, and its policies and processes are 'as robust as possible'.
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