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3 golden objects Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Legislative Auditor

Legislative Audit Commission

Evaluation Subcommittee

March 9, 2020

Members Present:
Representative Connie Bernardy, Chair  
Representative Rick Hansen
Representative Duane Quam
Senator Nick A. Frentz
Senator Mary Kiffmeyer
Senator Mark W. Koran


Representative Connie Bernardy, Chair, called the Legislative Audit Commission (LAC) Evaluation Subcommittee to order at 8:34 a.m. Chair Bernardy introduced Judy Randall, Deputy Legislative Auditor for the Office of the Legislative Auditor’s (OLA’s) Program Evaluation Division.

Ms. Randall thanked the subcommittee on the topics they selected last year, gave an update on the topics that had already been released in February and March, and updated the members on the report releases yet to come. Ms. Randall said that there were 102 topics in the subcommittee’s agenda materials that they would be narrowing down to about 15 for the meeting.

Representative Hansen asked if a couple of the Minnesota Department of Transportation topics related to funding could be combined. Ms. Randall said that it was more likely that in those cases, the funding questions alone could be addressed by the OLA Financial Audit Division.

Senator Kiffmeyer then asked if some of the topics under the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency were topics that could be combined. Ms. Randall responded that one of the topics specific to Water Gremlin was being done as an OLA Special Review. Further discussion took place among members in regards to air and water quality permitting, environmental justice, and which topic or combination of topics could potentially be placed on the short list. Chair Bernardy said she wanted to support Monitoring and Regulating Pollution as an environmental topic for the short list.

Senator Koran asked if two of the topics on the Department of Labor and Industry could be combined. Ms. Randall said the two topics could be combined. Further discussion took place among members as to which aspects of the Metro Transit topics could also be considered.

Representative Hansen asked if the Trout Habitat Grants topic could be done by the Financial Audit Division. Ms. Randall said that topic could potentially involve a larger number of questions that could extend beyond just a financial audit. Ms. Randall then suggested that perhaps the subcommittee consider some of the State Boards on the list because OLA hears repeated concerns from people who are licensed by these boards about their licensing processes and their complaint resolution processes.

Further discussion took place as each subcommittee member then gave the chair their top three selections, with Chair Bernardy adding her selections last. Once the tally of topics from members was taken, minus duplicates, the result was a list of 16 topics for further consideration.

Representative Hansen moved to authorize the list of 16 topics for OLA staff to complete background papers on.

Ms. Randall then read aloud the 16 selected topics before the vote to ensure all members were working from the same list. Chair Bernardy then mentioned that earlier discussion had intended to set aside a placeholder for an environmental topic. Chair Bernardy then added an environmental topic, which brought the final list to 17 topics.

Further discussion took place regarding reducing the list of topics from 17 to 16 or 15 for further consideration. Senator Frentz withdrew one of his selections to reduce the list from 17 to 16. Ms. Randall then read aloud the list again to ensure all members had the final, correct topics, as follows:

  1. Achievement and Integration for Minnesota (AIM)
  2. Board of Animal Health Oversight of Domestic Animals
  3. Board of Cosmetology
  4. Board of Psychology
  5. Child Protection Removals and Reunifications
  6. Collaborative Urban and Greater Minnesota Educators of Color Program
  7. DNR Special Revenue Funds
  8. Driver Examination Stations
  9. Impact of Building Code and Permit Requirements
  10. Individual and Small-Group Market Health Insurance
  11. Metro Transit
  12. Metropolitan Airports Commission
  13. MnDOT Contract and Employment Goals
  14. Monitoring and Regulating Pollution
  15. Public Utilities Commission Decision Making
  16. Trunk Highway Funding

Representative Hansen renewed his motion to authorize the list of 16 topics for OLA staff to complete background papers on. The motion passed.

Chair Bernardy adjourned the meeting at 9:17 a.m.

Representative Connie Bernardy, Evaluation Subcommittee Chair

Maureen Garrahy, Recording Secretary