In accordance with the statutory requirements of the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act of 2014 (DATA Act) and standards established by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the U.S. Department of the Treasury, we audited the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Office of the Chief Financial Officer’s (OCFO) compliance with the DATA Act for the first quarter of fiscal year 2019. The audit was part of the activities included in our 2019 annual audit plan. Our objectives were to assess the (1) completeness, accuracy, timeliness, and quality of the financial and award data submitted for publication on USASpending.gov and (2) HUD’s implementation and use of the governmentwide financial data standards established by OMB and Treasury.
HUD OCFO generally complied with the reporting requirements of the DATA Act. The information it submitted for inclusion on USASpending.gov for the first quarter, fiscal year 2019, was complete, accurate, timely, and in accordance with the governmentwide data standards established by OMB and Treasury. Although we determined that HUD’s overall data quality was high, we identified a few exceptions. Specifically, we determined that data were not initially complete and the data elements could not always be traced to source documentation. In addition, HUD had DATA Act procedures documents that contained inconsistent information. The weaknesses occurred because (1) some program activity codes were disabled in HUD’s Oracle Federal Financials system, (2) data such as Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) numbers and zip codes was missing or invalid, (3) HUD could not provide source documentation or the data elements did not match the source documents, and (4) there was a lack of coordination among the HUD offices to ensure that policies and procedures for the DATA Act were consistent. As a result, HUD could improve the accuracy, completeness, and timeliness of its data submitted to USASpending.gov.
We recommend that HUD’s CFO and senior accountable official continue to work to improve data quality and ensure that (1) required data are complete, accurate, and reported in a timely manner, (2) all data elements are traceable to the source documentation, and (3) procedures for DATA Act reporting are consistent among its various offices.