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Report

Annual Report and Accounts 2020 to 2021

The Gambling Commission's 2020 to 2021 Annual Report and Accounts

  1. Contents
  2. Board performance

Board performance

The Board

The Board met formally twelve times during the year. It monitors and receives regular reports from its Audit and Risk, Remuneration, National Lottery and National Lottery Competition Committees.

Meeting attendance by Commissioners is given in the following table, based on the number of meetings each Commissioner was eligible to attend based on their committee memberships:

CommissionerBoardAudit and Risk CommitteeFinance and Performance CommitteeRemuneration CommitteeNational Lottery CommitteeNational Lottery Competition Committee
Bill Moyes (Chairman)12/12N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Terry Babbs1(Chair of Finance and Performance Committee)10/12N/A7/7N/A6/9N/A
John Baillie2(Chair of Audit and Risk Committee)12/125/6N/AN/AN/A12/13
Brian Bannister11/122/37/7N/A7/9N/A
Carol Brady MBE11/12N/AN/A5/5N/AN/A
Stephen Cohen (Chair of National Lottery Competition Committee)12/12N/AN/AN/AN/A13/13
Jo Hill10/123/37/7N/AN/AN/A
Sir Martin Narey31/1N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
Trevor Pearce4CBE QPM (Chair of National Lottery Committee and Remuneration Committee)12/122/3N/A5/59/9N/A
Jonathan Scott51/12N/AN/AN/A1/9N/A
Catharine Seddon (Senior Independent Director)11/122/2N/A5/5N/A13/13
Number of meetings in year12675913

Board meetings provide the opportunity for robust and constructive challenge and debate amongst board members and senior management. As part of this process, Commissioners are required to disclose any potential conflicts of interest, as set out in the Code of Conduct for Commissioners, which is available on our website.

During the year, a significant amount of time in formal board meetings was focused on monitoring progress against the delivery of the Commission’s Corporate Strategy, taking action to protect consumers from harm, and consideration of the policy issues relating to the next National Lottery Licence Competition.

Consistent with good practice, the Board undertook a Board Effectiveness Review. It found the standard of performance was good, with improvements over the year in meeting management, but did identify some areas where effectiveness could be improved, centring on engagement, enhancing diversity and the use of decision making by correspondence. An action plan was put in place to address all of the recommendations.

The Board is supported by a number of Committees, all of which are outlined on the following pages. Details of the committee members and their attendance can be found in the previous table, while the remit and responsibilities of each Committee are set out in the Terms of Reference on our website.

Commissioners also spend time outside of board and committee meetings attending events and engaging with stakeholders, as well as providing non-executive advice on strategic projects.

Senior Independent Director

Consistent with the UK Corporate Governance Code and with DCMS guidance, the Board has appointed a Senior Independent Director (SID) from among its current members. Catharine Seddon was appointed as SID in June 2017. She was due to step down from this post in June 2020, but will now stay on in the role until April 2022.

The role of the SID is to provide a Board-level lead for high standards of governance, conduct the appraisal of the Chairman and act as a route to resolve any concerns about the operation of the board.

Audit and Risk Committee

The Audit and Risk Committee supports the Board and the Accounting Officer in their responsibilities by monitoring the integrity of the Commission’s annual statutory financial statements, reviewing the Commission’s governance, internal control and risk management systems, and by reviewing the internal and external audit services.

In addition to Commissioners, the Audit and Risk Committee also has an independent member, Chris Andrew, who was appointed on 2 January 2019 following the departure of previous independent member, Ann Harris.

Finance and Performance Committee

The Finance and Performance Committee was established in May 2020 as a result of the 2019 Board Effectiveness Review.

The Committee supports the Board and Accounting Officer in providing detailed scrutiny of the business plan and budget, financial planning and organisational performance monitoring.

Remuneration Committee

The Remuneration Committee supports the Board and Accounting Ofcer in their responsibilities for performance management, senior appointment departures and HR policies and practices. It also monitors progress with regards to culture, including the results of (and actions resulting from) annual colleague engagement surveys.

National Lottery Committee

The National Lottery Committee advises the Board and the Chief Executive in relation to the exercise of certain Commission functions under the National Lottery etc. Act 1993. The Committee has decision making powers in a number of areas delegated to it by the Board. A significant part of the Committee’s business is engagement with and review of the National Lottery operator’s strategy and performance.

National Lottery Competition Committee

The National Lottery Competition Committee advises the Board and the Chief Executive in respect of the National Lottery 4th Licence Competition, and through oversight of the process of the Competition. The Committee has decision making powers in a number of areas delegated to it by the Board. As well as Commissioners, the Committee also has an independent member, David Rossington who was appointed on 31 July 2018. The Senior Responsible Ofcer for the Competition, John Tanner, has also been a member of the Committee since November 2019.

Regulatory Panel

The Regulatory Panel determines some licence applications and deals with significant regulatory decisions which may include the revocation of licences. The Regulatory Panel sat on three separate occasions during 2020-21, with each case requiring two or three Commissioners to attend for a full day hearing in addition to substantial preparation and review time.

Advisory Board for Safer Gambling (ABSG)

The ABSG provides independent advice to the Commission on research, education and treatment programmes needed to support the new National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms, along with the associated funding requirements. The ABSG is chaired by Dr Anna van der Gaag CBE.

Digital Advisory Panel (DAP)

The DAP comprises experts from the digital sector, including specialists in networks, social media, retail and logistics. The Panel meets on a bi-monthly basis and provides the Commission with advice on matters regarding technology, digital trends and the implications for the Commission as a regulator. The DAP is chaired by Andy Payne.

Lived Experience Advisory Panel (LEAP)

As part of the Commission’s commitment to learning from those with lived experience of gambling harms, the Commission worked with an interim group of experts by experience in 2020 to co-design the LEAP advisory group. LEAP began meeting in January 2021, and comprises 12 members, chaired by Charles Ritchie.

Expert Advisory Group (EAG)

The EAG provided advice and recommendations to the Fourth National Lottery Competition team. The work of EAG concluded at the end of 2019-20.

Spending review 2021

During 2021-22 there will be a spending review, we expect this to be a three-year funding settlement. This does not affect the Commission in the same way as other bodies, as our income is raised in the form of fees on gambling operators. However, there may be some government wide efficiency targets that we have to take into consideration. This will be developed as part of our ongoing medium-term financial planning process.

References

1 Appointed Chair of Finance and Performance Committee from May 2020

2 Confirmed Chair of Audit and Risk Committee from May 2020

3 Resigned May 2020

4 Became Chair of Remuneration Committee from September 2019

5 Appointment ended 30 April 2020

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