FOIA FACTS ABOUT THE OFFICE OF THE AUDITOR GENERAL

 

This information is being provided in compliance with the Freedom of Information Act (5 ILCS 140/3 and 140/4) and the Auditor General's implementing rules (2 Ill.Adm.Code 601).

 

Office Mission and Responsibilities

 

The mission of the Office of the Auditor General is to assist the General Assembly in achieving oversight of State government and improvement in audited agency operations by:

--    Performing objective audits and evaluations of agency programs and operations;
--    Providing useful information generated by such audits and evaluations to the General Assembly, the Governor and other concerned parties;
--    Offering recommendations to bring governmental operations into conformity with applicable laws and regulations; and
--    Providing information to the General Assembly for its use in evaluating agency and program performance and in making informed policy decisions.


The most important and formal manner in which we interact with the General Assembly is through the Legislative Audit Commission.  Every report we issue is reviewed by the Commission.  Many reviews involve public hearings in which all involved parties are permitted to appear.  The members of the Legislative Audit Commission are appointed by the Speaker of the House and the President of the Senate.  Membership is divided equally between both the political parties and the houses of the General Assembly.  Members as of August, 2014, are: 

Senate Members 

 

House Members

Sen. Jason Barickman, Co-Chair
Sen. Bill Brady
Sen. Andy Manar
Sen. Iris Y. Martinez
Sen. John Mulroe
Sen. Jim Oberweis

 

Rep. Rich Brauer
Rep. Fred Crespo
Rep. Frank J. Mautino, Co-Chair
Rep. David Reis
Rep. Robert Rita
Rep. Ron Sandack


The Auditor General also acts as Chairman of the Legislative Travel Control Board.  The Legislative Travel Control Board has jurisdiction over travel by employees of the General Assembly, legislative boards and commissions, the Office of the Auditor General and all legislative agencies.  By statute, the Board consists of the following members serving ex-officio:

Auditor General, Chairman
President of the Senate
Minority Leader of the Senate
Speaker of the House of Representatives
Minority Leader of the House of Representatives


Any member may designate a deputy to serve in his or her place at any or all meetings of the Board. 

 

Organizational Structure

The Auditor General maintains offices in Springfield and Chicago.  As of June 2014, the Office employed 93 staff.  The operating budget for Fiscal Year 2015 is $30.8 million.  The following chart illustrates the Office's basic organizational structure:

 

 

 

AUDITOR GENERAL

 

INSPECTOR

GENERAL

 

 

 

ASSISTANT TO

AUDITOR GENERAL

 

 

 

 

 

EXECUTIVE

SECRETARY TO

AUDITOR GENERAL

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DEPUTY

AUDITOR GENERAL

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FISCAL OFFICER

 

 

LEGAL COUNSEL/FOIA OFFICER

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PERFORMANCE

AUDITS

 

FINANCIAL/COMPLIANCE

AUDITS

 

INFORMATION

SYSTEMS AUDITS

 

 

 

 

As shown in the above chart, the Office has been organized into three audit divisions:

  • The Compliance Audit Division conducts financial audits and compliance examinations of each State agency at least once every two years.  Some agencies are audited annually.  Other responsibilities include the audit of the State’s combined annual financial statement prepared by the State Comptroller, a review of the State’s centralized accounting system, and single audits of federally funded programs.

  • The Performance Audit Division conducts performance audits as directed by the General Assembly.  Performance audits include management audits, which are also called economy and efficiency audits, and program audits.

  • The Information Systems Division is responsible for reviewing the information system controls of State agencies, as well as supporting the Auditor General’s Office in computer hardware, software and network use. 

 

Categories of Public Records

The following represents primary categories of public records immediately available from the Office on our website at www.auditor.illinois.gov:

  • Audit Reports.  Report digests (summaries) and full audit reports of released audits are available on our website.  The full text of an older audit not available on-line can be obtained by contacting our Office at the contact information listed below. 

  • Auditor General's Quarterly Report.  The Illinois State Auditing Act (30 ILCS 5/3-15) requires the Auditor General to submit a quarterly report on the operations of the Office to the Legislative Audit Commission.  Copies of the quarterly reports are available on our website.

  • Auditor General's Annual Report.  The Illinois State Auditing Act (30 ILCS 5/3-15) requires the Auditor General to submit an annual report summarizing all audits produced during the preceding year. The report is distributed to the Legislative Audit Commission, the General Assembly, the Governor and the public by March 1 of each year and is available on our website.

  • Audit Advisories.  Annually, the Auditor General's Office produces and distributes an Audit Advisory designed to share information that may help agency directors, fiscal staff and internal auditors improve State agency operations.  Copies of annual Audit Advisories are available on our website.

  • Legislative Travel Control Board meeting minutes and policy.  The Board generally meets on a quarterly basis.  Recent meeting minutes are available on the website, along with the current Legislative Travel Control Board Travel Guide.  Other documents, such as travel vouchers and exception listings, are available upon request.



Other categories of public records that will be made available upon request include the following:

  • Emergency Purchase Affidavits.  The Illinois Procurement Code (30 ILCS 500/20-30 (c)) requires agencies expending funds in an emergency to file an affidavit with the Auditor General within 10 days after the procurement, setting forth the amount expended, the name of the contractor, and the circumstances requiring the emergency purchase. 

  • Contractual Services Certifications.  The State Finance Act (30 ILCS 105/15a) requires State agencies to file a certification with the Auditor General prior to executing a contract with any former employee who received certain early retirement incentives based on retirement before 1993.  The certification must state that the former employee either possesses unique expertise or is essential to the operation of the agency.

  • Late Filing Affidavits.  The Illinois Procurement Code (30 ILCS 500/20-80 (c)) states when a contract liability exceeding $10,000 is incurred by a State agency, a copy of the contract, purchase order, or lease shall be filed with the State Comptroller within 15 days.  If not filed within 30 days of execution, the State agency must file an affidavit with the State Comptroller and the Auditor General setting forth an explanation why the contract liability was not filed in a timely manner in order for the State Comptroller to issue payment.

  • Fiscal Control and Internal Auditing Certifications.  The Fiscal Control and Internal Auditing Act (30 ILCS 10/3003) requires the chief executive officer of each State agency to file with the Auditor General a certification stating whether the systems of internal fiscal and administrative controls of the State agency fully comply with the requirements of the Act.  If the systems do not fully comply with the requirements of the Act, the certification shall include a report describing any material weaknesses in the systems of internal fiscal and administrative controls.  The certification must include the plans and schedule for correcting the weaknesses or a statement of the reasons why the weaknesses cannot be corrected.

  • Miscellaneous documents produced by the Office for administrative, training and audit related purposes.


Process for Obtaining Public Records

The Freedom of Information Act sets forth permissible charges for public records (5 ILCS 140/6 (b)).  Generally, the first 50 pages of black and white copies are free.  Additional pages may be charged at the rate of 15 cents per page.  For color copies or abnormal size copies, requesters may be charged the actual cost of copying.  Charges may be waived when in the public interest.
 
Requests for public records may be submitted by mail, e-mail, hand delivery or facsimile, directed to the FOIA Officer, as follows:

            FOI Officer
            Office of the Auditor General
            Iles Park Plaza
            740 East Ash
            Springfield, Illinois  62703-3154
            (217) 782-6046 (phone)
            (888) 261-2887 (TTY)
            (217) 785-8222 (facsimile)
            oag.auditor@illinois.gov

The request should include a description of the public records being sought, with as much specificity as possible.  The Office must respond to a request for public records within five (5) business days after receipt of the request, unless the request is made for a commercial purpose or the timeframe is extended pursuant to the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act.  A requester may appeal a denial by seeking a review of the issue by the Public Access Counselor in the Attorney General's Office at the following address:


                        Public Access Counselor
                        Office of the Attorney General
                        500 S. 2nd St.
                        Springfield, IL  62706
                        publicaccess@atg.state.il.us

Requests for review by the Public Access Counselor must be submitted within 60 calendar days after the date of the final denial.  Alternatively, the requestor may file a civil action in the circuit court within two years after the alleged violation took place.

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