In January 2010, as part of a pilot project by the Auditor of State, some government entities were eligible for an AUP engagement instead of a traditional financial audit. By utilizing this option, local governments benefit from lower costs, while AOS auditors are still able to provide efficient, high quality service and fiscal oversight to the entities.
The AUP engagement at the Village of Sugar Grove in Fairfield County is one such example. The AUP covered fiscal years 2008 and 2009 and provided cost savings of more than 50 percent compared to the previous financial audit.
Another example is Addison Township in Gallia County, which recently qualified for an AUP and realized a 73 percent reduction in costs when compared to their prior audit expense.
Both of these local governments, as well as others who are qualified for an AUP, are experiencing the benefits of these engagements – lower costs and expedited results, while auditors are still able to address any potential significant risks at the entity. At Sugar Grove and Addison Township, auditors offered recommendations to help each local government make improvements, while providing taxpayers with the necessary fiscal supervision expected from the Ohio Auditor of State.
“To qualify for an Agreed Upon Procedure engagement, local government entities need to have a history of clean audits and must meet very specific criteria,” Chief Deputy Auditor Bob Hinkle said. “Our office believes these engagements provide the accountability and transparency taxpayers are looking for while they also create a more efficient, timely and cost-effective process for the client.”