Georgetown Audit Wins Knighton Award for High-Impact, Innovative Audit
A 2014 Distinguished Knighton Award for best performance audit in the large audit shop category has been awarded to the King County Auditor’s Office (KCAO) by the Association of Local Government Auditors (ALGA). The report, Performance Audit of the Georgetown Combined Sewer Overflow Project, was judged on several key elements, such as the potential for significant impact, the persuasiveness of the conclusions, the focus on improving government efficiency and effectiveness, and its clarity, conciseness and innovation. ALGA noted that the audit is a thorough and well-documented examination of an issue—large capital projects– that affects a broad swath of the public. In particular, the audit clearly articulated to readers why the findings matter to policymakers and citizens. In addition, ALGA praised KCAO’s use of formatting, including headers, signposting, and exhibits, to help readers move through the technical detail to understand the important findings.
Each year, local government audit organizations from around the U.S. and Canada submit their best performance audit reports for judging. The purpose of the competition is to improve government services by encouraging and increasing levels of excellence among local government auditors. Judges from peer organizations determined that this audit was among the best of 2014. The Association of Local Government Auditors is a national audit association founded in 1985 committed to supporting and improving local government auditing through advocacy, collaboration, education, and training, while upholding and promoting the highest standards of professional ethics.
Improvements Made but Capital Project Data Issues Persist
Data quality issues persist despite efforts to establish policies and tools meant to increase the reliability and usefulness of capital project information in countywide systems. While the Office of Performance, Strategy and Budget has a new plan for satisfying requirements for recording capital budget information, additional work is needed to promote consistent and accurate reporting of capital project data by agencies. The Capital Projects Data Reliability report was presented to the Government Accountability & Oversight Committee on April 28, 2015.
Light Duty Fleet: Costs and Emissions Could Be Reduced
Despite the efforts of agencies to reduce the cost and emissions produced by county vehicles, underutilized vehicles and fuel inefficiency are barriers to further progress. Agencies could take steps to optimize the size and composition of the fleet if better cost, use, and fuel data were available. We make recommendations related to identifying and implementing technologies and alternatives to help ensure optimal fleet size, reducing idling by law enforcement vehicles, and improving data for decision-making. The Light Duty Fleet audit was presented to the Government Accountability & Oversight and the Law, Justice & Emergency Management Committees on April 28, 2015.
2014 Annual Report – Highlights of 2014 Performance: Driving Improvement in County Government
We are pleased to announce the Auditor's Office released its Highlights of Performance report for 2014. The report summarizes the accomplishments of the King County Auditor’s Office during 2014 and provides examples of how the Auditor’s Office improved county programs and enhanced oversight and transparency in capital projects. The King County Auditor’s Office promotes and improves performance, accountability, and transparency of King County government through objective and independent audits, oversight, and studies.
Auditor's Office 2015-16 work program approved
The Metropolitan King County approved the Auditor's Office 2015-16 work program on December 18, 2014. The focus of our work program is on performance, accountability, and transparency.
Public Works Magazine: Not-so-Risky Business
Councilmember Jane Hague and Capital Projects Oversight Manager Tina Rogers from the King County Auditor’s Office (shown at the right) are featured in a cover-page article in July’s Public Works magazine. The article describes the risk-assessment system that tracks King County’s largest capital projects. For more information about the Auditor’s Office Capital Projects Oversight Program or the county’s risk-assessment process, contact Tina Rogers at 206-477-1036 or email email@example.com.
External quality control review of Auditor's Office
Based on the results of a peer review conducted during the week of February 24, 2014, the King County Auditor's Office's internal quality control system was suitably designed and operating effectively to provide reasonable assurance of compliance with Government Auditing Standards for performance audits during the period January 1, 2011 through December 31, 2013. Click here to read the management letter in full.
The Association of Local Government Auditors – The Knighton Award
The Knighton Award recognizes the best performance audit reports of the preceding year. Honorable mention award was given to the King County Auditor’s Office for their 2012 Performance Audit of King County’s Investment in Information Technology.
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Advancing performance, accountability, and transparency
Audits and Special Studies
The King County Auditor's Office provides oversight of county government through independent audits and other studies regarding the performance and efficiency of agencies and programs, compliance with mandates, and integrity of financial management systems. The office reports the results of each audit or study to the Metropolitan King County Council.
The King County Auditor’s Office performs its work in accordance with applicable Government Auditing Standards.
Capital Projects Oversight
In 2007, the King County Council created the Capital Projects Oversight program within the King County Auditor’s office. The oversight program was established to mitigate capital project overruns and potential problems, contain costs, and inform decision-making processes through adequate, timely, and useful standardized reporting. Current projects being monitored are: Accountable Business Transformation, Brightwater Wastewater Treatment System, South Regional Maintenance Facility (Roads Services Division), Facilities Management Division Project Delivery Management, and Criteria for Capital Project Prioritization.
Countywide Performance Management
Since 2002, the council has enacted legislation seeking to improve the county's use of performance measures, including a 2003 motion that created the auditor-led Performance Measurement (now Management) Work Group with countywide representation. Based on a framework recommended by the Performance Management Work Group and efforts by this office to promote performance management in King County, the 2008 Performance and Accountability Act requires all King County agencies and departments to prepare strategic plans every five years, annual business plans, and relevant performance measures and paved the way for the development of the first countywide strategic plan, approved by the King County Council on July 26, 2010 . Advancing performance-based government is one of the ways the auditor's office promotes cost-effective and accountable county services.