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December 12, 2013

Thompson: DHS Financial Audit a Step in the Right Direction

(WASHINGTON) – Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement regarding news that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has received its first clean, unqualified financial audit. However, the audit also found material weaknesses with DHS' internal control over financial reporting. DHS is currently responsible for managing more than $60 billion every year to carry out its mission.

I would like to applaud DHS on reaching this major milestone – a clean audit – in its decade-long effort to improve its financial accountability. The management of the Department's substantial budget has not been without controversy or difficulty. Its ability to provide independent auditors with enough relevant and reliable financial information to reach a clean audit is a definitive step in the right direction.

Hopefully, the Department will continue to maintain and improve upon its current efforts so it can be removed from GAO's high-risk list in the future. Despite this breakthrough, DHS still has financial management challenges – there is still a need to modernize its aging financial management systems, fully comply with financial management mandates, and improve internal controls over financial reporting – in which four material weaknesses were still found. I look forward to working with the Department, and its new leadership, toward these goals.

The report from the DHS Office of the Inspector General (OIG), entitled Independent Auditors' Report on DHS' FY 2013 Financial Statements and Internal Control Over Financial Reporting (OIG-14-18) can be found HERE.

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Media Contact: Adam Comis at (202) 225-9978