The Office of the State Auditor (OSA) spent its state appropriation within its established authority. The office's internal controls provided reasonable assurance that assets were safeguarded and financial activities were properly recorded in the state's accounting system. Except for the finding below, the office complied with applicable legal provisions for items tested.
The OSA was established by Article V of the State Constitution and operates under Minnesota Statute Chapter 6. Minnesota voters elect the state auditor to a four-year term. Judith Dutcher was state auditor from January 1995 through December 2002. Patricia Awada was elected state auditor in November 2002 and began her term on January 6, 2003. The mission of the OSA is to help ensure financial integrity, accountability, and cost-effectiveness in over 4,300 governmental entities throughout the state. The state auditor serves on the State Executive Council, State Board of Investment, Land Exchange Board, Minnesota State Housing Finance Agency Board, Public Employees Retirement Association Board, and Rural Finance Authority Board.
The OSA's operations are funded by state appropriations. The office's appropriation in fiscal year 2002 totaled approximately $10 million. The audit practice receipts collected from local units of government are deposited in the General Fund as non-dedicated receipts.