The National Service Trust holds the funds set aside to pay the education awards of national service members who successfully complete their service terms. Responsibility for the education awards that have been earned or will be earned in the near future is the largest liability on AmeriCorps’ financial statements at $340 million. AmeriCorps has been unable to produce auditable financial statements for the last six years. This year, independent auditors again issued a disclaimer of opinion, reporting six material weaknesses and one significant deficiency. Five of the material weaknesses are recurring, three of them since FY 2017, one since FY 2018, and one since FY 2021. The auditors reported a new material weakness, Knowledge Gap throughout Financial Management Operations. Further, the financial statements and accompanying notes were not in accordance with U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles and Office of Management and Budget Circular A-136 and contained mathematical errors and inconsistencies. The repeated audit opinion disclaimers reflect AmeriCorps’ lack of leadership with relevant Federal financial management knowledge and skills. In recognition of the pervasive weaknesses, AmeriCorps included in its Annual Management Report (AMR) a Statement of No Assurance, acknowledging that the agency could not provide reasonable assurance as to the effectiveness of internal control over financial reporting, operations, including programmatic operations, and compliance with laws. This is the third year that AmeriCorps has issued a No Assurance statement. Remedial actions by AmeriCorps have closed six of the 37 prior year recommendations. The remaining 31 recommendations continue to be valid, one of them in modified form. The auditors also made 11 new recommendations, for a total of 42. AmeriCorps’ response to the audit report did not address the findings and recommendations in detail but reiterated the agency’s commitment to strengthening financial management. The independent accounting firm RMA Associates LLC performed the audit of the AmeriCorps FY 2022 National Service Trust Fund financial statements, under contract with AmeriCorps-OIG.
Saturday, November 19, 2022
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