Before submission to the Joint Secretariat, each progress report must be verified and validated by an independent controller.
This process is carried out by a qualified first level controller - usually auditors or certified public accountants - to verify that the expenditure incurred to implement the project complied with the relevant EU, national, regional, institutional and programme rules as well as with the provisions of the subsidy contract and the approved application form.
The main aim of the controls is to provide a guarantee for the Managing Authority, the Certifying Authority and, most importantly, for the project itself, that costs co-financed under the Interreg NWE Programme are accounted for and eligible.
Designation of the first level controller (FLC)
It is the responsibility of each Member State to designate the first level controllers for partners located on their territory and participating in a project. In practice, this means that each partner needs a controller that is authorised by its Member State.
In principle, there are three general models:
- centralised control at Member State level
- decentralised control through controllers selected from a central shortlist
- decentralised control through an internal or external controller selected by the project partner and approved at Member State level by the approbation body.
All approbation bodies and controllers are provided with the contact details of the project partners once they are approved. However, for the decentralised countries we suggest that the project partners get in touch with the approbation bodies as well in order to get started on the first level control process and understanding the requirements per Member State. For the centralised systems we suggest to contact the first level controller in order to verify calenders and availabilites.