Nebraska Revised Statute 84-304

Chapter 84 Section 304

84-304.

Auditor; powers and duties; assistant deputies; qualifications; powers and duties.

It shall be the duty of the Auditor of Public Accounts:

(1) To give information electronically to the Legislature, whenever required, upon any subject relating to the fiscal affairs of the state or with regard to any duty of his or her office;

(2) To furnish offices for himself or herself and all fuel, lights, books, blanks, forms, paper, and stationery required for the proper discharge of the duties of his or her office;

(3)(a) To examine or cause to be examined, at such time as he or she shall determine, books, accounts, vouchers, records, and expenditures of all state officers, state bureaus, state boards, state commissioners, the state library, societies and associations supported by the state, state institutions, state colleges, and the University of Nebraska, except when required to be performed by other officers or persons. Such examinations shall be done in accordance with generally accepted government auditing standards for financial audits and attestation engagements set forth in Government Auditing Standards (2011 Revision), published by the Comptroller General of the United States, Government Accountability Office, and except as provided in subdivision (10) of this section, subdivision (16) of section 50-1205, and section 84-322, shall not include performance audits, whether conducted pursuant to attestation engagements or performance audit standards as set forth in Government Auditing Standards (2011 Revision), published by the Comptroller General of the United States, Government Accountability Office.

(b) Any entity, excluding the state colleges and the University of Nebraska, that is audited or examined pursuant to subdivision (3)(a) of this section and that is the subject of a comment and recommendation in a management letter or report issued by the Auditor of Public Accounts shall, on or before six months after the issuance of such letter or report, provide to the Auditor of Public Accounts a detailed written description of any corrective action taken or to be taken in response to the comment and recommendation. The Auditor of Public Accounts may investigate and evaluate the corrective action. The Auditor of Public Accounts shall then electronically submit a report of any findings of such investigation and evaluation to the Governor, the appropriate standing committee of the Legislature, and the Appropriations Committee of the Legislature. The Auditor of Public Accounts shall also ensure that the report is delivered to the Appropriations Committee for entry into the record during the committee's budget hearing process;

(4)(a) To examine or cause to be examined, at the expense of the political subdivision, when the Auditor of Public Accounts determines such examination necessary or when requested by the political subdivision, the books, accounts, vouchers, records, and expenditures of any agricultural association formed under Chapter 2, article 20, any county agricultural society, any joint airport authority formed under the Joint Airport Authorities Act, any city or county airport authority, any bridge commission created pursuant to section 39-868, any cemetery district, any community redevelopment authority or limited community redevelopment authority established under the Community Development Law, any development district, any drainage district, any health district, any local public health department as defined in section 71-1626, any historical society, any hospital authority or district, any county hospital, any housing agency as defined in section 71-1575, any irrigation district, any county or municipal library, any community mental health center, any railroad transportation safety district, any rural water district, any township, Wyuka Cemetery, the Educational Service Unit Coordinating Council, any entity created pursuant to the Interlocal Cooperation Act, any educational service unit, any village, any service contractor or subrecipient of state or federal funds, any political subdivision with the authority to levy a property tax or a toll, or any entity created pursuant to the Joint Public Agency Act.

For purposes of this subdivision, service contractor or subrecipient means any nonprofit entity that expends state or federal funds to carry out a state or federal program or function, but it does not include an individual who is a direct beneficiary of such a program or function or a licensed health care provider or facility receiving direct payment for medical services provided for a specific individual.

(b) The Auditor of Public Accounts may waive the audit requirement of subdivision (4)(a) of this section upon the submission by the political subdivision of a written request in a form prescribed by the auditor. The auditor shall notify the political subdivision in writing of the approval or denial of the request for a waiver.

(c) Through December 31, 2017, the Auditor of Public Accounts may conduct audits under this subdivision for purposes of sections 2-3228, 12-101, 13-2402, 14-567, 14-1805.01, 14-2111, 15-1017, 16-1017, 16-1037, 19-3501, 23-1118, 23-3526, 71-1631.02, and 79-987.

(d) Beginning on May 24, 2017, the Auditor of Public Accounts may conduct audits under this subdivision for purposes of sections 13-2402, 14-567, 14-1805.01, 14-2111, 15-1017, 16-1017, 16-1037, 71-1631.02, and 79-987 and shall prescribe the form for the annual reports required in each of such sections. Such annual reports shall be published annually on the web site of the Auditor of Public Accounts;

(5) To report promptly to the Governor and the appropriate standing committee of the Legislature the fiscal condition shown by such examinations conducted by the auditor, including any irregularities or misconduct of officers or employees, any misappropriation or misuse of public funds or property, and any improper system or method of bookkeeping or condition of accounts. The report submitted to the committee shall be submitted electronically. In addition, if, in the normal course of conducting an audit in accordance with subdivision (3) of this section, the auditor discovers any potential problems related to the effectiveness, efficiency, or performance of state programs, he or she shall immediately report them electronically to the Legislative Performance Audit Committee which may investigate the issue further, report it electronically to the appropriate standing committee of the Legislature, or both;

(6)(a) To examine or cause to be examined the books, accounts, vouchers, records, and expenditures of a fire protection district. The expense of the examination shall be paid by the political subdivision.

(b) Whenever the expenditures of a fire protection district are one hundred fifty thousand dollars or less per fiscal year, the fire protection district shall be audited no more than once every five years except as directed by the board of directors of the fire protection district or unless the auditor receives a verifiable report from a third party indicating any irregularities or misconduct of officers or employees of the fire protection district, any misappropriation or misuse of public funds or property, or any improper system or method of bookkeeping or condition of accounts of the fire protection district. In the absence of such a report, the auditor may waive the five-year audit requirement upon the submission of a written request by the fire protection district in a form prescribed by the auditor. The auditor shall notify the fire protection district in writing of the approval or denial of a request for waiver of the five-year audit requirement. Upon approval of the request for waiver of the five-year audit requirement, a new five-year audit period shall begin.

(c) Whenever the expenditures of a fire protection district exceed one hundred fifty thousand dollars in a fiscal year, the auditor may waive the audit requirement upon the submission of a written request by the fire protection district in a form prescribed by the auditor. The auditor shall notify the fire protection district in writing of the approval or denial of a request for waiver. Upon approval of the request for waiver, a new five-year audit period shall begin for the fire protection district if its expenditures are one hundred fifty thousand dollars or less per fiscal year in subsequent years;

(7) To appoint two or more assistant deputies (a) whose entire time shall be devoted to the service of the state as directed by the auditor, (b) who shall be certified public accountants with at least five years' experience, (c) who shall be selected without regard to party affiliation or to place of residence at the time of appointment, (d) who shall promptly report to the auditor the fiscal condition shown by each examination, including any irregularities or misconduct of officers or employees, any misappropriation or misuse of public funds or property, and any improper system or method of bookkeeping or condition of accounts, and it shall be the duty of the auditor to file promptly with the Governor a duplicate of such report, and (e) who shall qualify by taking an oath which shall be filed in the office of the Secretary of State;

(8) To conduct audits and related activities for state agencies, political subdivisions of this state, or grantees of federal funds disbursed by a receiving agency on a contractual or other basis for reimbursement to assure proper accounting by all such agencies, political subdivisions, and grantees for funds appropriated by the Legislature and federal funds disbursed by any receiving agency. The auditor may contract with any political subdivision to perform the audit of such political subdivision required by or provided for in section 23-1608 or 79-1229 or this section and charge the political subdivision for conducting the audit. The fees charged by the auditor for conducting audits on a contractual basis shall be in an amount sufficient to pay the cost of the audit. The fees remitted to the auditor for such audits and services shall be deposited in the Auditor of Public Accounts Cash Fund;

(9) To develop and maintain an annual budget and actual financial information reporting system for political subdivisions that is accessible online by the public;

(10) When authorized, to conduct joint audits with the Legislative Performance Audit Committee as described in section 50-1205; and

(11) Unless otherwise specifically provided, to assess the interest rate on delinquent payments of any fees for audits and services owing to the Auditor of Public Accounts at a rate of fourteen percent per annum from the date of billing unless paid within thirty days after the date of billing. For an entity created pursuant to the Interlocal Cooperation Act or the Joint Public Agency Act, any participating public agencies shall be jointly and severally liable for the fees and interest owed if such entity is defunct or unable to pay.

Source

Cross References

  • Interlocal Cooperation Act, see section 13-801.
  • Joint Airport Authorities Act, see section 3-716.
  • Joint Public Agency Act, see section 13-2501.
  • Successors, duties relating to, see section 84-604.
  • Tax returns, audited when, see section 77-27,119.

Annotations

  • Duty of Auditor of Public Accounts to audit accounts of holders of public money is primarily to determine that the state has received the public money to which it is entitled. Campbell v. Douglas County, 142 Neb. 773, 7 N.W.2d 764 (1943).

  • Under former law, Auditor of Public Accounts was authorized to issue warrant only when there had been an appropriation for a specific purpose. Fischer v. Marsh, 113 Neb. 153, 202 N.W. 422 (1925).

  • Auditor of Public Accounts should furnish blanks for settlement between State Treasurer and county treasurers. State v. Ure, 102 Neb. 648, 168 N.W. 644 (1918).

  • Under former law, Auditor of Public Accounts could not without specific appropriation, refund money paid into state treasury by mistake. Providence Washington Ins. Co. v. Weston, 63 Neb. 764, 89 N.W. 253 (1902).

  • Officer, under salary fixed by statute, is not accountable to Auditor of Public Accounts for manner in which his duties are discharged. Cornell v. Irvine, 56 Neb. 657, 77 N.W. 114 (1898).

  • County attorney may bring criminal action against officer in default, without direction of Auditor of Public Accounts. Bartley v. State, 53 Neb. 310, 73 N.W. 744 (1898).