A YEARLY opportunity for members of the public to see exactly where York council chiefs are spending public money is about to open.

Like all public bodies nationwide, the council has to open its accounts to let local residents to inspect its books at will.

The annual public examination of accounts takes place over four weeks each year, and this year it began yesterday, July 28 and runs until Monday, August 26.

The little-known obligation is enshrined in law under the Audit Commission Act 1993 and the Accounts and Audit Regulations 2003, and means tax-payers can find out for themselves how much money the council makes on parking, how much it spends on publicity, or any other area of interest.