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Glenn Hegar  ·  Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts

Fiscal Management Post-Payment Audit Report Summary
Office of State Prosecuting Attorney
Fiscal 2012 Third Quarter

Audit scope

A sample of the Office of State Prosecuting Attorney’s (Office) payroll and all 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 Sept. 1, 2010, through Aug. 31, 2011, were audited to determine compliance with applicable state laws.

Payroll transactions

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

The audit identified:

  • Missing authorized signature
  • Incorrect payment amount

Purchase transactions

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

The audit identified:

  • Incorrect payment of sales tax
  • Missing statutory authority for purchase
  • Missing purchase order
  • Prompt payment issues

Travel transactions

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

  • No errors were identified.

Security

The audit included a security review that entailed identifying any of the Office’s employees with security in USAS, USPS, the Texas Identification Number System (TINS) or on the voucher signature cards who were no longer employed or whose security had been revoked. Upon termination or revocation, certain deadlines must be observed so security can be revoked in a timely manner.

The audit identified:

  • One employee who remained listed on the Office’s voucher signature cards for 11 days and retained USAS/USPS security for 16 days.

Internal control structure

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

The review identified:

  • Two employees who could process and release payments in USAS without electronic oversight and one who could process and release payments through USPS.

Automatic participation in the agency’s 401k plan

According to House Bill 957, 80th Legislature, Regular Session (2007), agencies are required to have automatic participation for its employees in the Office’s 401k Plan. During the audit period, the Office did not have specific procedures to comply with House Bill 957.

Effective September 1, 2011, the Office has contracted with the Office of Court Administration (OCA) to conduct its Payroll/Human Resource and Accounting functions. OCA has procedures in place to comply with House Bill 957.

Prior post-payment audit and current audit recurring errors

A prior post-payment audit of the Office’s payroll, purchase and travel transactions was concluded on Feb. 29, 2008.

During the current audit, there were three recurring errors:

  • Incorrect payment of sales tax
  • Prompt payment issues
  • Control weakness over expenditure processing

In prior audits, the Office acknowledged it is often challenging for a small agency to have the staff available to maintain a complete separation of duties at all times. Prior to September 1, 2011, this agency had one employee to handle leave accounting, payroll, human resources, purchasing and budgeting. This employee’s position was eliminated by the Legislature and OCA now performs all of these functions.

At least five employees at OCA are now directly responsible for the duties formerly performed by one employee and are supervised by management. OCA has specific procedures in place to avoid errors of the type that occurred prior to their involvement with the Office.

Glenn Hegar
Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts
Questions? Contact statewide.accounting@cpa.texas.gov
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