The Auditor of Public Accounts serves Virginia citizens and decision makers by providing unbiased, accurate information and sound recommendations to improve accountability and financial management of public funds.
The Auditor of Public Accounts (APA) acts as the General Assembly's eyes and ears, independently monitoring and reporting how state agencies and institutions spend taxpayers' money. The agency helps the Commonwealth's leaders address the challenges facing Virginia today by providing sound, reliable information and alternatives. The Auditor, a constitutional officer elected to a four-year term, reports to the General Assembly through the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission (JLARC). While the Auditor's duties are defined by the Virginia Constitution and the Code of Virginia, JLARC approves the APA Workplan annually. The APA serves as the external auditor for all independent, judicial, and executive branch state agencies and higher education institutions in the Commonwealth. In many respects, the Auditor's Office operates like a CPA firm, with the Auditor serving as the managing partner. The APA receives approximately 85 percent of its funding from the General Fund of the Commonwealth with the remaining 15 percent resulting from billings for federal, pension, and other postemployment benefits audit work.
The primary focus of the APA is conducting Code of Virginia and federally-mandated audits such as the Commonwealth's Annual Comprehensive Financial Report (ACFR), the Single Audit of federal funds, and the Commonwealth's higher education institutions. We also audit pension and other postemployment benefit amounts used by state and local government employers in preparing their financial statements. In addition, the Auditor completes a risk assessment of the agencies and institutions not mandated for review and evaluates key issues facing the Commonwealth. Most non-mandated audits and reviews are designed to ensure that an agency has internal controls in place to protect the public's money and that they spend it the way the General Assembly planned. We also evaluate agency and institutional compliance with state and federal laws and regulations. The Office's remaining resources are dedicated to special projects focused on emerging issues that may require General Assembly consideration or action.
The Auditor's Office is comprised of a diverse group of professionals with a wide range of educational and professional backgrounds in accounting, business administration, finance, and information technology. From CPAs to MBAs to CISAs, our staff hold over 20 different types of professional certifications and are actively involved in relevant professional organizations, such as the National Association of State Auditors, Comptrollers, and Treasurers (NASACT), the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE), and the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA). The office expertise is spread over 11 specialty teams regularly trained in specific skills to help meet the agency's mission covering areas such as capital asset and contract management, higher education, information technology, judicial systems, process innovation, and risk analysis and monitoring.
We act in a manner that reflects favorably on ourselves, our coworkers and on the APA.
We see what needs to be done and participate or become involved.
We are well-informed and insightful.
We work together to create greater value.