Audit Charter

Mission 

The mission of the City Auditor is to serve the public interest by providing independent assessments that promote accountability, transparency, and excellence in governance within the programs, operations, and management of the government of the City of Brownsville. To achieve this, the Office of the City Auditor conducts independent and objective audits, investigations, and other reviews to evaluate the economy, efficiency, and effectiveness of government activities, ensure compliance with legal and regulatory requirements, and to prevent, detect, and deter fraud, waste, abuse, and misconduct in the expenditure of public funds. 

Authority

To fulfill its responsibilities, provide accountability, and maintain independence, the City Auditor and its staff shall: 

  • Have unrestricted access to all functions, records, property, and personnel of the City of Brownsville in meeting its specific audit objectives. This includes all systems that input, process, store, and report all information of the operations of the City that are not limited or otherwise restricted. 
  • Have full and free access to the Audit & Oversight Committee.
  • Allocate resources, set frequencies,  select subjects, determine  scopes of work, and apply audit techniques required to accomplish audit objectives.
  • Obtain the necessary assistance of personnel within the departments, agencies, and offices of the City of Brownsville where they perform work. 

Responsibility 

The City Auditor is responsible for: 

  • Developing a flexible Annual Audit Plan using appropriate risk-based methodology, including  any risks or control concerns identified by management and the city commission and submission of that plan to the Audit & Oversight Committee for review and approval.
  • Implementing  the Annual Audit Plan, as approved, including, as appropriate, any special tasks or projects requested by management, the city commission, and the Audit & Oversight Committee, all such special tasks and projects requiring review and approval by the Audit & Oversight Committee.
  • Issuing periodic reports to the Audit & Oversight Committee and City Commission summarizing  results of audits, reviews, and other work undertaken.
  • Establishing a system of audit follow-up to ensure timely and appropriate corrective action is taken on reported findings and recommendations.
  • Maintaining audit staff with sufficient knowledge, skills, experience, and professional certifications  to meet the requirements of this charter.
  • Maintain a quality assurance and improvement program that assesses the Office of the City Auditor’s conformity with the International Standards  for the Professional Practice of Internal Auditing of the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA), this charter, and City Auditor internal policies and procedures. 
  • Coordinate investigation of fraud, waste, abuse, and other activities of wrongdoing with other control and monitoring functions. 

Independence & Objectivity 

To properly perform its work, the City Auditor must be free from interference in determining the scope of audits, performing work, and communicating results. Accordingly, the City Auditor and its staff shall: 

  • Remain  free  of  influence  by  any  element   in  the organization, including matters of audit selection, scope, procedures, frequency, timing, or report content. To provide for its independence, the City Auditor reports through the Audit & Oversight Committee to the City Commission. 
  • Exhibit the highest level of professional objectivity in gathering, evaluating, and communicating information about the activity or process examined. The City Auditor will make a balanced assessment of all the relevant circumstances and not be unduly influenced by its own interests or by others in forming judgments. 
  • Disclose any conflicts of interest and any expected roles and/or responsibilities that fall outside of city auditing to ensure that safeguards are in place to limit impairments to independence or objectivity. 

Professional Standards 

The Office of the City Auditor will conform to the mandatory guidance contained within the  International Standards  for the Professional Practice of Internal Auditing of the Institute of Internal  Auditors (IIA), and the City Auditor and staff of the office shall govern themselves by adherence to IIA’s "Code of Ethics."