The legal advice obtained by Fight4Whitby was very clear: the 1905 Act is still in force. SBC is the successor Statutory Harbour Authority to WUDC. SBC is therefore obliged to comply with the 1905 Act, subject to any amendments made by subsequent legislation. Protracted legal correspondence with SBC failed to obtain any satisfactory response.
On behalf of F4W, a local elector objected to the External Auditor about the Draft SBC Accounts 2015-16, on the grounds that the treatment of income from Whitby harbour did not comply with the 1905 Act. This objection has been repeated for the Draft SBC Accounts for 2016-17 and 2017-18. Consequently the External Auditor has not signed off the SBC accounts for the last three years, pending investigations into whether SBC’s accounting treatment of income from Whitby harbour is legally correct.
Until the External Auditor reaches a final decision, all parties are legally prohibited from disclosing the content of the on-going exchanges. It has been necessary for Fight4Whitby to instruct barristers specialising in harbour legislation and public law.
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