Administration of Department of Justice Grants Awarded to
Native American and Alaska Native Tribal Governments

Audit Report 05-18
March 2005
Office of the Inspector General


Statement on Internal Controls


In planning and performing our audit of the administration of DOJ grants awarded to tribal governments, we considered the COPS Office, OJP, and OVWs internal controls for the purpose of determining our auditing procedures. The evaluation was not made for the purpose of providing assurance on the internal control structure as a whole; however, we noted certain matters that we consider reportable conditions under generally accepted government auditing standards.39

Finding I

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW did not ensure that grantees submitted or submitted in a timely manner all required financial and progress reports.

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW did not prohibit grantees from drawing down grant funds during periods where required financial and progress reports had not been submitted.

  • The COPS Office did not require that periodic progress reports be submitted at least annually for the 3-year hiring grants and semi annually for the 1-year equipment grants, which are due within a reasonable period of time after the end of the reporting period.

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW did not ensure that monitoring plans were developed for each grantee that included a risk assessment of each grantee based on past performance and compliance with grant requirements to determine the timing and frequency of office-based and on-site monitoring.

Finding II

  • The OJP and OVW did not ensure that grant funds were obligated in a timely manner.

  • The OJP and OVW did not withhold grant awards if the grant application budget required significant adjustments or if the applicant was delinquent in complying with prior requirements.

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW did not ensure that grant managers monitor grant drawdowns to determine if grant funds were being utilized.

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW did not ensure that grant managers follow up with grantees that had not drawn down any grant funds to determine whether the grantee had encountered any difficulties in implementing the grant program.

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW did not ensure that grant funds were deobligated and the grants closed for grantees unable or unwilling to implement grant programs in a timely manner.

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW did not ensure that grantees were not allowed to draw down grant funds in excess of immediate needs.

Finding III

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW did not ensure that expired grants were closed in a timely manner and that remaining grant funds were deobligated prior to closing the grant.

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW did not always review grant drawdowns prior to the end of the grant to determine if all grant funds had been drawn down, or follow up on any grants with remaining grant funds to determine if the grantee had expended or planned to expend remaining funds prior to the grant end date.

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW did not ensure that grantees were not allowed to draw down funds more than 90 days after the grant end date and that all funds remaining on grants that had expired for more than 90 days were deobligated.

Finding V

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW had not developed a formalized mechanism for coordinating and sharing information related to a DOJ strategy, administration, and monitoring of grants awarded to tribal governments.

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW had not developed a formalized process for training staff responsible for administering and monitoring tribal-specific grant programs.

  • The COPS Office, OJP, and OVW did not ensure that monitoring reports were provided to other components, bureaus, and offices responsible for administering and monitoring tribal-specific grant programs.

PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC) performed the FY 2004 financial statement audit of the Office of Justice Programs (OJP). During this audit they evaluated the general controls over OJPs financial systems, mixed feeder systems, and general support systems to determine if the internal controls over these systems were sufficient to provide reasonable assurance that transactions processed by these systems could be relied upon by the auditors in performing the financial statement audit testing. However, as a result of the work performed, PwC identified material weaknesses in internal controls over computerized information systems at OJP. Weaknesses identified included inadequate controls over changes to applications and program changes in these systems, over the integrity of data passed between the feeder and core financial systems, and over access to systems and data. PwC concluded OJP did not have effective internal controls over the computerized information systems it uses to process grant transactions and as a result it could not rely upon the internal controls over these systems. PwC also identified material weaknesses in OJPs overall control environment, grant accounting and monitoring, documentation of adjusting journal entries, and the financial reporting process. Accordingly, PwC was unable to complete the financial statement audit and issue a disclaimer of opinion on OJPs financial statements.

Because we are not expressing an opinion on the overall management control structure of the COPS Office, OJP, or OVW, this statement is intended solely for the information and use by the COPS Office, OJP, and OVW in managing its grant programs awarded to tribal governments.


Footnotes

  1. Reportable conditions involve matters coming to our attention relating to significant deficiencies in the design or operation of the management control structure that, in our judgment, could adversely affect the ability of the COPS Office, OJP, and OVW to administer its grants awarded to tribal governments.



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