Audit Recommendations Create Quarter Million in Annual State Savings
First quarter post-audit accountability reports show how audits create actual results
BOSTON, MA — Today State Auditor Suzanne Bump released a summary report for the first quarter of FY13, which shows the Commonwealth will save up to $357,873 because of changes made in response to select audits, with $225,628 in year-over-year savings. The report is part of an initiative introduced in 2011 to monitor how audited agencies are acting on the Auditor’s recommendations. Since the initiative’s introduction, the reports have identified $52.8 million in potential savings.
“It is important for the public to see that state agencies are embracing accountability and making positive changes,” said Auditor Bump. “This report demonstrates how our audits save taxpayer dollars, protect public assets, and improve service delivery. I applaud the auditees for their responsive actions. Together we are making government work better.”
Post-audit review surveys are issued six months after the release of an audit with findings of financial or operation deficiencies. Today’s reports gives a progress update on 16 previously audited agencies. Actions taken by agencies range from operational changes to recoveries of improper payments.
Among the actions reported are:
- The Department of Developmental Disabilities (DDS) terminated its contract with the human service provider Life Focus Center of Charlestown, after an audit identified various problems related to $1.2 million in expenses and billings, forcing the agency to close. In addition, DDS recovered $28,436 in non-program-related expenditures and has required a transfer of $48,809 in assets obtained through questionable contract billings to its successor organization. The state has also hired a private auditing firm to review the LFC to determine if additional recoupment is needed.
- The Weymouth Housing Authority reduced its average vacant unit turnaround period by over 100 days, enabling the Authority to generate approximately $150,000 more in rental income annually.
- Northern Essex Community College implemented an automated system that ensures employee training and awareness of regulations related to safeguarding computer equipment, reducing personnel costs by $40,000 annually.
Post-audit reviews are self-reported information that is unaudited. The Office of The State Auditor (OSA) makes no claims as to the accuracy of the information. Since it is subject to future audits and public disclosure, it is in an auditee’s best interest to provide the OSA with forthright and accurate responses. According to the surveys, 90% of the 337 recommendations made by Auditor Bump have been acted on.