|Public Release Date: September 4, 1998||No. 98-49|
The Ombudsman for Corrections is an independent agency created in 1972. The agency operates under the authority of Minn. Stat. Sections 241.41 through 241.45. The agency's sole purpose is to investigate complaints lodged by inmates, staff, and other interested parties against the Department of Corrections, the Board of Pardons, and any regional or local correctional facility licensed or inspected by the commissioner of the Department of Corrections, whether public or private. Patricia Seleen is the current Ombudsman for Corrections.
Our audit scope included a review of internal controls over payroll, rent, and purchased services for the period July 1, 1995, through June 30, 1997. We also designed our audit to provide reasonable assurance that the agency complied with applicable legal provisions governing each area.
We concluded that the agency designed and implemented internal controls to provide reasonable assurance that payroll, purchased services, and rent were properly authorized, documented, and accurately recorded in the state's accounting system. For the items tested, the agency processed expenditures in compliance with finance-related legal provisions. However, we found that the agency needs to review key biweekly SEMA4 payroll processing reports and restrict access to its personnel and payroll system and data.
The Ombudsman for Corrections agreed with the audit report finding and recommendation. They began to formally review SEMA4 reports and restricted staff security clearances.