Office of the City Auditor
Frequently Asked Questions
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The Office of the City Auditor helps both City Management and City Council in their respective management and governance duties by bringing a systematic disciplined approach to assessing the effectiveness of internal control and risk management techniques, in terms of both design and execution.

The City's external auditors are not part of the City and make an independent determination whether the City's financial statements follow generally accepted accounting principles. As a part of their opinion, they also conclude whether the financial statements fairly represent the financial position of the organization, whether the results of operations for the period are accurately represented, and whether the statements have been affected materially.

Internal auditors are part of the City and their scope of work involves more than a just a financial component. Their work involves both financial and non-financial aspects of City and aims to help it accomplish its objectives through improved operations, risk management, internal controls, and governance.

The Office of the City Auditor reports to the Mayor and City Council through the Audit Committee. For more information about the Audit Committee, see FAQ "What is the Audit Committee?".

Yes. Most medium and large cities across the U.S. have internal audit offices. In fact, the Association of Local Government Auditors (ALGA) reports that it has 375 member organizations, of which 375 are municipalities. Many other cities in Texas have an internal audit function, including Arlington, Austin, Brownsville, Dallas, El Paso, and Houston. Visit www.governmentauditors.org/ for more information about ALGA and government auditing.

Departments are selected for audit based on the Annual Audit Plan that is approved by City Council. This plan is based on requests from City Council, the City Manager, and a risk assessment performed by the Office of the City Auditor. The City Auditor may amend the audit plan during the year, with the concurrence of the Audit Committee. View the current Audit Plan.

Internal auditors exercise independence when they give an impartial and unbiased assessment during the course of their work. To maintain this independence, the City Auditor reports directly to the Audit Committee of the City Council. Additionally, at the beginning of each audit, all auditors assigned to that project are required individually certify that no impairments to independence exist.

All audit projects conducted by the Office of the City Auditor include a fraud component, where in auditors identify potential fraud risks and determine whether an adequate internal control system is in place to prevent and/or detect them. However, the Office of the City Auditor does not conduct investigations of fraud, waste, and abuse. This role is delegated to the City's Office of Municipal Integrity (OMI), a Division of the Human Resources Department. When audit work shows sufficient and appropriate evidence that fraud, waste, and abuse has either occurred, or is likely to have occurred the matter is reported as a finding in our reports and referred to the City's OMI. Visit www.sanantonio.gov/EmployeeInformation/Relations/FraudPrevention for more information about OMI or to report occurrences of fraud, waste, or abuse, or call Office of Municipal Integrity 210.207.5038.

Investigations in to allegations of fraud, waste, and abuse are handled by the Office of Municipal Integrity, a Division of the Human Resources Department. When reporting fraud, waste, or abuse, it is important to provide as many details as possible. Visit www.sanantonio.gov/EmployeeInformation/Relations/FraudPrevention to report fraud, waste, or abuse, or call Office of Municipal Integrity 210.207.5038.

Auditors look for potential risks and whether internal controls are in place to mitigate those risks. They also review current policies, procedures, and practices to determine whether they are efficient, effective, and economical. The Office of the City Auditor performs three types of audits: financial, attestation, and performance.

Reports issued by the City Auditor's Office are distributed to the Mayor, City Council, Audit Committee, City Management and appropriate Department Directors. They are also posted for viewing by the general public on our website. View reports issued by the City Auditor's Office.

Auditors compile sufficient and appropriate evidence to support their conclusions Findings are communicated to the Mayor, City Council, Audit Committee, City Management and appropriate Department Directors in our audit reports. View reports issued by the City Auditor's Office.

The Audit Committee is one of the standing Committees of the City Council. It serves the City Council, the Office of the City Auditor, the City Manager and staff, and the general public by promoting a culture of improvement, integrity, accountability, and trust in the performance of City operations and functions. It is comprised of five members appointed by the Mayor. Three members are members of City Council and two members are residents of the City of San Antonio with applicable experience in financial and/or audit matters. The Audit Committee responsibilities include guidance and oversight of the Office of the City Auditor.

The Office of the City Auditor undergoes a peer review every three years as required by government auditing standards (GAS). The review provides reasonable assurance that the City Auditor’s Office has an adequate internal quality control system and that work performed is in compliance with GAS.

Our last peer review was performed in September 2011, concluded that our quality control system is in compliance with GAGAS. View the reviewers' report.

Auditors in the Office of the City Auditor participate in a number of professional organizations. These include, but are not limited to the Association of Local Government Auditors, the Institute of Internal Auditors, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, and the Information Systems Audit and Control Association.

The audit generally follows three phases. The first phase is the planning phase during which the auditor gains an understanding of the area to be audited and identifies associated risks. The second phase is known as fieldwork, wherein auditors perform specific tests and analysis of data to form sufficient and appropriate evidence to support their findings, conclusions and recommendations. The final phase of the audit is the reporting phase, during which auditors prepare the audit report. The City Auditor incorporates Management's response into the draft audit report sends it to the Audit Committee Chair and Mayor. Upon obtaining an approval for release from the Mayor and the Audit Committee Chair, the final report is issued.

A follow-up audit is defined as a process by which the auditors determine the adequacy, effectiveness, and timeliness of actions taken by management on previously reported audit findings.