Grambling State University President Dr. Frank G. Pogue says that the Louisiana Legislative Auditor’s Office has given the university a clean, effective and efficient annual audit for the period ending June 30, 2012. It is the first time in recent memory that the 111-year-old university has not had any public findings with a state audit.
“The findings identified in our prior management letter relating to unlocated movable property and tax penalties and interest have been substantially resolved by management,” reads the report, issued Nov. 7 and released on Nov. 12. “We did not identify any new findings of weaknesses in internal controls or noncompliance with laws in the current year.”
The required state audit evaluates the institution’s financial processes and fiscal accountability starting July 1, 2011. Though the university was facing some fiscal challenges when the president arrived in 2009. Working with Vice President of Finance and Administration Leon Sanders, Dr. Pogue implemented several changes to enhance the university’s financial integrity.
The audit says no important noncompliance, discrepancies or problems were found in the school’s internal analytical and audit procedures. “We were just totally excited and pleased about the results of the audit,” Dr. Pogue said. “We have worked hard as an entire university to achieve this status.”
Pogue and Sanders worked with the university finance office and key administration leaders to put in place a fiscally responsible and responsive team, including Moroline Washington, director of grants administration; Johnnie Faye Williams, director of property and receiving; Eric Turner, payroll manager and Raymond Abraham, a controller with more than 25 years of experience in the state auditor’s office in Baton Rouge. In addition, university staff was trained on new fiscal policies and procedures for expense reporting, payroll management and moveable property. Previous audits found problems with moveable property, tax penalties and interest.
“What stands out for us all is that the auditors told us that this is the first time in anyone’s memory that there have been no public findings at our university,” said Dr. Pogue. “Everyone on our finance team, and at our university, should know how important it is that we take care of our business internally when it comes to using state funds. We won’t have public findings when we find, and resolve, things ourselves.”
“It doesn’t stop here,” added Pogue. “We’ll keep doing what we’re doing to be responsible as we use state funds.”