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Glenn Hegar  ·  Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts

Fiscal Management Post-Payment Audit Report Summary
Fifth Court of Appeals – Dallas
Fiscal 2011 Fourth Quarter

Audit scope

A sample was audited of the Fifth Court of Appeals – Dallas’ (Court’s) payroll, purchase and travel transactions that processed through the Uniform Statewide Accounting System (USAS) and the Uniform Statewide Payroll/Personnel System (USPS) during the period beginning Dec. 1, 2009, through Nov. 30, 2010.

Each sample transaction was audited to determine compliance with applicable state laws.

Payroll transactions

Payroll transactions were audited for compliance with the General Appropriations Act (GAA), the Texas Payroll/Personnel Resource and other pertinent statutes.

The audit of the Court’s payroll transactions identified the following:

  • 16 instances of employee files missing authorizing signatures
  • One instance of a personnel file missing documentation of prior state service verification
  • Four instances in which the employee’s state effective service date differed from the agency effective service date entered into USPS by the Court
  • One instance of an underpayment of longevity

Purchase transactions

Purchase transactions were audited for compliance with the GAA, eXpendit, the State of Texas Procurement Manual and other pertinent statutes.

The audit of the Court’s purchase transactions identified the following:

  • Three transactions in which the Court improperly reimbursed an employee for sales tax
  • 10 transactions in which the amount paid was more than the amount authorized on the Purchase Order (PO)
  • Two transactions in which the PO was created after the Court received the invoices

Prompt payment law and scheduling rule

The Court’s compliance with the prompt payment law and scheduling rule was audited.

The audit identified the following:

  • One transaction in which interest was not paid though it was due to the vendor
  • Two transactions paid too early that resulted in a loss of earned interest to the State Treasury

Travel transactions

Travel transactions were audited for compliance with the GAA, Textravel and other pertinent statutes.

The audit of the Court’s travel transactions identified the following:

  • One transaction where the Court reimbursed an employee for travel expenses related to attending a funeral of a non-state employee
  • One travel voucher where the Court used the same receipt twice to reimburse an employee for taxi fare
  • Two travel vouchers where the Court reimbursed an employee for lodging without the required documentation
  • None of the travel vouchers were completed in their entirety
  • The Court has not implemented effective controls to ensure the accurate reporting of travel expenses in USAS

Internal control structure

The Court’s internal control structure was reviewed. The review was limited to obtaining an understanding of the Court’s controls sufficient to plan our audit and did not include tests of control policies and procedures.

One area of risk involving the internal control structure and its operation was noted:

  • The Court had two employees with multiple security capabilities.

CTIA forms compliance

As a routine part of the security review, the Court’s compliance with the requirement that all agency users of the Comptroller’s state government accounting systems complete a Confidential Treatment of Information Acknowledgement (CTIA) form was reviewed.

  • The Court did not obtain a signed CTIA form for two employees.

Fixed assets

A limited number of fixed assets acquired by expenditures were selected during the audit period to test for accurate reporting in the State Property Accounting System (SPA) and to verify existence of the assets.

  • All assets were located and accurate tracking in SPA verified.

Prior post-payment audit and current audit recurring errors

A prior post-payment audit of the Court’s payroll, purchase and travel transactions was issued on August 3, 2006.

The current audit identified the following recurring errors:

  • Incomplete documentation
  • Incorrect longevity pay
  • Improper payment of travel expenses
  • Control weakness over expenditure processing
Glenn Hegar
Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts
Questions? Contact statewide.accounting@cpa.texas.gov
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