COLUMBUS - 

State Representative Wes Retherford (R-Hamilton) has announced that the Ohio House of Representatives today passed House Bill 6, which strives to lower auditing costs for political subdivisions and increase these entities’ participation in audits.


Specifically, House Bill 6 codifies the Ohio Auditor of State’s policy regarding the option for allowing, in certain situations, an Agreed-Upon Procedures (AUP) audit, which is a lower-cost auditing method that permits eligible government agencies to save money and time without sacrificing accountability. These audits provide less-formal presentations of findings and are ultimately more cost-effective and less time-consuming, allowing savings of 25 to 50 percent of full audit costs.


“I was happy to vote for H.B. 6, which gives our cities and townships tools for providing accountability to their citizens, and does so in a cost-effective manner,” said Rep. Retherford. “With the tightening of budgets at the local level, this bill will give them affordable means of auditing their finances without sacrificing transparency.”


The Auditor of State’s Office, one of five independently elected statewide offices in Ohio, is responsible for auditing more than 5,700 state and local government agencies. Under the direction of Auditor Dave Yost, the office also provides financial services to local governments, investigates and prevents fraud in public agencies, and promotes transparency in government.


In 2012, the Auditor of State’s Office expanded its policy on AUP audits to include public offices with annual expenditures of up to $5 million. According to this new policy, as many as 1,400 government entities may quality for an AUP audit, which will reduce audit costs and preserve accountability to the taxpayers.


More than 1,000 AUP audits were completed in 2011 alone. House Bill 6 codifies the Auditor of State’s policy into law and strives to save taxpayer dollars, as full audits are very expensive procedures for local governments.


House Bill 6 passed with unanimous support and now will move to the Ohio Senate.

 
 
 
  
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