In deciding on the type of assurance to provide, the agency head should consider information from the sources described in Section III of this Circular, with input from senior program and administrative officials and the IG. The agency head must describe the analytical basis for the type of assurance being provided, and the extent to which agency activities were assessed. The statement of assurance must be signed by the agency head.
Reporting Pursuant to Section 4. 31 U.S.C. 3512(d)(2)(B) (commonly referred to as Section 4 of the Integrity Act) requires an annual statement on whether the agency's financial management systems conform with government-wide requirements. These financial systems requirements are presented in OMB Circular No. A-127, "Financial Management Systems," section 7. If the agency does not conform with financial systems requirements, the statement must discuss the agency's plans for bringing its systems into compliance.
If the agency head judges a deficiency in financial management systems and/or operations to be material when weighed against other agency deficiencies, the issue must be included in the annual Integrity Act report in the same manner as other material weaknesses.
Distribution of Integrity Act Report. The assurance statements and information related to both Sections 2 and 4 should be provided in a single Integrity Act report. Copies of the report are to be transmitted to the President; the President of the Senate; the Speaker of the House of Representatives; the Director of OMB; and the Chairpersons and Ranking Members of the Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs, the House Committee on Government Reform and Oversight, and the relevant authorizing and appropriations committees and subcommittees. In addition, 10 copies of the report are to be provided to OMB's Office of Federal Financial Management, Management Integrity Branch. Agencies are also encouraged to make their reports available electronically.
Streamlined Reporting. The Government Management Reform Act (GMRA) of 1994 (P.L. 103-356) permits OMB for fiscal years 1995 through 1997 to consolidate or adjust the frequency and due dates of certain statutory financial management reports after consultation with the Congress. GMRA prompted the CFO Council to recommend to OMB a new approach towards financial management reporting which could help integrate management initiatives. This proposal is being pilot-tested by several agencies for FY 1995. Further information on the implications of this initiative for other agencies will be issued by OMB after the pilot reports have been evaluated. In the meantime, the reporting requirements outlined in this Circular remain valid except for those agencies identified as pilots by OMB.
Under the CFO Council approach, agencies would consolidate Integrity Act information with other performance-related reporting into a broader "Accountability Report" to be issued annually by the agency head. This report would be issued as soon as possible after the end of the fiscal year, but no later than March 31 for agencies producing audited financial statements and December 31 for all other agencies. The proposed "Accountability Report" would integrate the following information: the Integrity Act report, management's Report on Final Action as required by the IG Act, the CFOs Act Annual Report (including audited financial statements), Civil Monetary Penalty and Prompt Payment Act reports, and available information on agency performance compared to its stated goals and objectives, in preparation for implementation of the GPRA.
Government Corporations. Section 306 of the Chief Financial Officers Act established a reporting requirement related to management controls for corporations covered by the Government Corporation and Control Act. 31 U.S.C. 9106. These corporations must submit an annual management report to the Congress not later than 180 days after the end of the corporation's fiscal year. This report must include, among other items, a statement on control systems by the head of the management of the corporation consistent with the requirements of the Integrity Act.
The corporation is required to provide the President, the Director of OMB, and the Comptroller General a copy of the management report when it is submitted to Congress.