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Oversight.gov Data Definitions

Resolution – OMB Circular No. A-50 6. b. (1) For most audits, the point at which the audit organization and agency management or contracting officials agree on action to be taken on reported findings and recommendations; or, in the event of disagreement, the point at which the audit followup official determines the matter to be resolved. A report may be considered resolved despite the right of persons outside the agency to negotiate, appeal, or litigate. Resolution of a report with respect to parties outside the Government does not preclude further consideration of issues in the report by agency management. (2) For preaward contract audits, the point at which the agreement is reached, a contract price negotiated, or proposed award canceled, whichever occurs first. (3) For GAO reports, the point at which the agency responds to the Congress, as required by the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1970.

Per OMB Circular No. A-50 8. a (2), resolution must be completed within a maximum of 6 months from the issuance of the final report.

Resolved Recommendation – a recommendation for which the audit organization and agency management or contracting officials have reached resolution.

Unresolved Recommendation – a recommendation that has not yet been resolved.

Management Decision - §5(f)(5) the evaluation by the management of an establishment of the findings and recommendations included in an audit report and the issuance of a final decision by management concerning its response to such findings and recommendations, including actions concluded to be necessary.

Corrective Action – OMB Circular No. A-50 6. c. Measures taken to implement resolved audit findings and recommendations.

Final Action §5(f)(6) (A) the completion of all actions that the management of an establishment has concluded, in its management decision, are necessary with respect to the findings and recommendations included in an audit report; and (B) in the event that the management of an establishment concludes no action is necessary, final action occurs when a management decision has been made.

Implemented Recommendation – a recommendation for which management has completed final action.

Open Recommendation – a recommendation for which management has not yet completed final action – an unimplemented recommendation. Note: an open recommendation may or may not be resolved. It is the status of the final action that determines whether a recommendation is open.

Closed Recommendation – a recommendation for which management has completed final action – an implemented recommendation.

Report Issuance Date – for recommendation aging purposes, the date of the final report.

Questioned Cost §5(f)(1) a cost that is questioned by the Office because of-(A) an alleged violation of a provision of a law, regulation, contract, grant, cooperative agreement, or other agreement or document governing the expenditure of funds; (B) a finding that, at the time of the audit, such cost is not support by adequate document; or (C) a finding that the expenditure of funds for the intended purpose is unnecessary or unreasonable.

Unsupported Cost §5(f)(2) a cost that is questioned by the Office because the Office found that, at the time of the audit, such cost is not supported by adequate documentation.
Status of a Recommendation - For purposes of tracking the status of a recommendation on Oversight.gov, a recommendation will be reported as Open or Closed.

Priority Recommendation - A priority recommendation is one the agency’s OIG believes that, when implemented, will have the most significant benefit or impact to the agency’s mission, operations, programs, or funds.

Funds Put to Better Use [§5(f)(4)] a recommendation by the OIG that funds could be used more efficiently if management of an establishment took actions to implement and complete the recommendation, including— (A) reductions in outlays; (B) deobligation of funds from programs or operations; (C) withdrawal of interest subsidy costs on loans or loan guarantees, insurance, or bonds; (D) costs not incurred by implementing recommended improvements related to the operations of the establishment, a contractor or grantee; (E) avoidance of unnecessary expenditures noted in preaward reviews of contract or grant agreements; or (F) any other savings which are specifically identified.

Significant Recommendation - a recommendation for corrective action addressing a problem, abuse, or deficiency relating to the administration of programs and operations of the department or agency that the Office has deemed to be noteworthy and described in its semiannual report to Congress.

Handling Disagreements or Non-Responsiveness Regarding Recommendations

OMB Circular No. A-50 addresses such disagreements. It requires agencies to designate a top management official to oversee audit followup, including resolution and corrective action. It further requires agency management officials to be “responsible for receiving and analyzing audit reports, providing timely responses to the audit organization, and taking corrective action where appropriate. Where management officials disagree with an audit recommendation, the matter shall be resolved by the followup official” (emphasis added). Likewise, the audit followup official has personal responsibility for ensuring that (1) systems of audit followup, resolution, and corrective action are documented and in place, (2) timely responses are made to all audit reports, (3) disagreements are resolved, (4) corrective actions are actually taken, and (5) semi-annual reports required by paragraph 8.a. (8) below are sent to the head of the agency.