March 7, 2016
Representative Rick Hansen, Chair|
Representative Connie Bernardy
Senator Mary Kiffmeyer
Senator Warren Limmer
Representative Rick Hansen, Chair, called the Legislative Audit Commission (LAC) Evaluation Subcommittee meeting to order at 10:33 a.m. The purpose of the meeting was to review the list of topics to be evaluated by the Office of the Legislative Auditor (OLA) suggested by legislators and others.
Representative Hansen introduced Jim Nobles, Legislative Auditor. Mr. Nobles announced that Cecile Ferkul, Deputy Legislative Auditor for Financial Audit, wanted to introduce new staff participating in OLA’s Government Auditors Program. Ms. Ferkul introduced each new staff auditor and explained that the newest employees had been with OLA for about two months, and some had been with OLA for over one year. Representative Hansen welcomed them to their new roles.
Mr. Nobles then introduced Judy Randall, Deputy Legislative Auditor for Program Evaluation, who gave an overview of the topic-selection process. She said that there was an addendum of last-minute additions to the list of suggested evaluation topics. Ms. Randall said that the subcommittee should select ten “semi-finalist” topics for which OLA staff would prepare background papers. She said OLA would survey all legislators to gauge their interest on the “semi-finalist” topics. Ms. Randall suggested that the subcommittee reconvene in about two weeks to review the survey results and background papers, and to pick the final topics; then the full LAC would meet to approve the final topics. She also reminded members that one topic had previously been chosen—Research and Development Credit—under the new economic development incentive program law.
Representative Hansen asked the members to go through the list of topics and select their top four choices. The topics with the most “votes” would become semi-finalists. The goal was to narrow the list of 76 topics down to 10 or 11 semi-finalist topics for possible evaluation by OLA in 2016. After some discussion, the topics selected by the subcommittee for further consideration were:
Clean Water Legacy Fund Outcomes
Guardians Ad Litem
Home- and Community-Based Services
Minnesota State High School League
MnDOT Transportation System Access
Parks and Trails Legacy Fund Outcomes
Perpich Center for Arts Education
Protection of Student Data
Standardized Student Testing
University of Minnesota Research Using Human Fetal Tissue
Senator Kiffmeyer moved to have the 11 topics be on the list for further consideration; the motion prevailed.
Ms. Randall briefly discussed the timeline for the topic-selection process. She said that the subcommittee would try to meet the week of March 21 to select the final topics to recommend to the full commission for approval, and the full commission would hopefully meet that same week as well.
With no further business, Representative Hansen adjourned the meeting at 11:33 a.m.
Representative Rick Hansen, Chair
Shelly Watterud, Recording Secretary