Minnesota Office of the Legislative Auditor
Financial Audit Division

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Report Summary


CriMNet Financial Audit


Key Conclusions

CriMNet program managers do not have complete, timely, or reliable accounting data to monitor, analyze, and control project costs.

Generally, the court system, the departments of Public Safety and Corrections, and the Sentencing Guidelines Commission used professional/technical contracts to obtain information system services needed to accomplish the purposes specified in CriMNet appropriations. However, we noted some exceptions to legal provisions or good fiscal practices in the agencies’ administration of the contracts.

The CriMNet Office incurred unnecessary and unreasonable expense when it leased office space in excess of its needs. In addition, the CriMNet Office did not always comply with statutory provisions and state policy regarding the disposition of frequent flyer miles.

Background

In Minnesota, criminal justice information is created and maintained on separate systems by courts, executive agencies, and local jurisdictions. Historically, this separation of information has caused problems for law enforcement officers, judges, public defenders, and other criminal justice professionals who need full and accurate information to do their jobs. Minnesota’s efforts to better integrate criminal justice information started with planning in the early 1990s. In 2001, the state started making significant investments in new or enhanced information systems and improved criminal justice work processes, and it designated these and future integration efforts as "CriMNet." Criminal justice information is considered "integrated" when critical information can be shared at key decision points during the criminal justice process.

The 2003 Legislature directed that:

The legislative auditor must complete a financial audit of all components and expenditures of the group of projects generally referred to as CriMNet by March 1, 2004. The audit must include a review of all contracts related to CriMNet for compliance with state law, including the laws and guidelines governing the issuance of contracts.

In addition, the Legislative Audit Commission directed the Legislative Auditor’s Office to conduct a program evaluation of CriMNet. The Program Evaluation Division’s report evaluated the status of information integration to date; the extent to which state agency integration projects have met time, cost, and result expectations; and how well the CriMNet program as a whole has been managed.

More Information

Office of the Legislative Auditor ♦ Room 140, 658 Cedar St., St. Paul, MN 55155