Sunday, July 11, 2010

Seattle Schools Permit Performance of Work Prior to Contract Approval

The Washington State Auditor's Office recently issued an audit finding that the Seattle School District permitted work to be performed on a number of personal service contracts prior to execution of the contracts, in violation of the District's policies and procedures.  The audit also found instances where the District actually paid consultants for services prior to approval of the contracts.

Issue Unresolved Since Last Year:  According to the audit report, "this issue was brought to the District's attention in last year's audit.  It has not be resolved."

Response by School District:  This District concurred with the finding and "will continue to emphasize the importance of compliance with contracting requirements and will implement a specific set of consequences for non-compliance."

Audit Report:  To read the details of the audit report, click here, and go to page 22 of the report.

Lessons Learned:  Auditors will hold public agencies accountable not only for applicable laws and grant requirements, but for compliance with the agency's own policies and procedures.  It's a good idea to conduct a pre-audit on an annual basis of your agency's compliance with applicable laws, regulations, and policies.  Please contact me if you would like assistance in reviewing your agency's compliance with various contracting and procurement standards.

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