"Poor procurement practices"
are also cited in an audit
An audit of the state attorney general's office found "several deficiencies" in the department's internal control over financial reporting and operations of its Child Support Enforcement Agency.
The audit, released yesterday, also found the department's "poor procurement practices resulted in noncompliance with certain provisions of the Hawaii Public Procurement Code."
"As a result, there was no assurance that fair competition was sought by the department and that state funds were spent in an effective and cost-beneficial manner," the report said.
The audit of the department's accounting and internal controls was conducted by the certified public accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP during fiscal year 2004 for state Auditor Marion Higa's office.
"We recommended that the department maintain accurate and complete child support subsidiary records and ensure that the balances reconcile to the related bank accounts," the report said.
The auditors also recommended that the department develop procedures that ensure timely year-end financial reporting.
In a written response, the attorney general's office disagreed with several of the audit's findings and recommendations.
"The department disagrees with the merit and severity of our finding involving the failure to reconcile child support cash accounts and subsidiary records," the report said. "In support of its stance, the department details its child support cash reconciliation procedures while simultaneously admitting that some of the reconciling items will never be completely resolved."