Officials Announce First DoD-Wide Audit, Call for Budget Certainty
By Jim Garamone DoD News, Defense Media Activity
WASHINGTON, Dec. 7, 2017 — The Defense Department is starting the first agencywide financial audit in its history, Pentagon officials announced today.
Defense Department Comptroller David L. Norquist and chief Pentagon spokesperson Dana W. White spoke during the Pentagon news conference, in which they also addressed the possibility of a government shutdown when the continuing resolution that has been keeping the government running expires tomorrow.
Norquist said he received the DoD Office of Inspector General's notification that the financial statement audit begins this month.
The audit is massive. It will examine every aspect of the department from personnel to real property to weapons to supplies to bases. Some 2,400 auditors will fan out across the department to conduct it, Pentagon officials said.
"It is important that the Congress and the American people have confidence in DoD's management of every taxpayer dollar," Norquist said.
Audits are necessary to ensure the accuracy of financial information. They also account for property. Officials estimate the department has around $2.4 trillion in assets. "With consistent feedback from auditors, we can focus on improving the processes of our day-to-day work," the comptroller said. "Annual audits also ensure visibility over the quantity and quality of the equipment and supplies our troops use."
The DoD Office of the Inspector General hired independent public accounting firms to conduct audits of individual components – the Army, Navy, Air Force, agencies, activities and more – as well as a departmentwide consolidated audit to summarize all results and conclusions.
"Beginning in 2018, our audits will occur annually, with reports issued Nov. 15," Norquist said.