Audit Division

Audit Summary

 

Department of Human Resources

Aging Services Division

Report LA00-11

 

Results in Brief


The Aging Services Divisionís grant management practices help ensure grants are accurately reported, but can be improved to help ensure grants are properly planned and awarded, and appropriately monitored.For example, the grant planning and awarding processes are often based on insufficient information and the Division does not always perform program and fiscal reviews timely.By improving its grant planning and awarding practices, Aging Services will help ensure it awards grant funding to appropriate applicants through an objective award process.By improving its grant monitoring practices, the Division will gain necessary information on grantee activities, helping ensure services are being rendered as required.Division management has indicated it is currently taking steps to improve its grant management practices.

 

 

Principal Findings


               The Division can improve its grant planning by including sufficient information in its grant announcements for social and nutrition services. Including sufficient information in the grant announcements is necessary to communicate the Divisionís needs to potential grantees and help ensure applicants have the information to apply for grant funding. Also, including sufficient information in the grant announcements can help the Division ensure it awards grant funding to the appropriate applicants.(page 9)

 

                 The Division did not completely plan the grant award process before releasing its grant announcement for social services.By determining the grant award process before releasing its grant announcement, the Division sets standards on how each application will be evaluated.It also makes the evaluation of applications easier and the award process defendable.(page 10)

 

                 The Division did not always follow the established grant award process stated in the grant announcement for social services.For example, the grant announcement stated that two review panels would score grant applications; however, these panels only scored part of the applications.Division staff scored the remaining part.Not following the grant award process stated in the grant announcement can weaken the Divisionís case during an award protest.(page 11)

 

                 The Division did not always document its basis for grant award decisions. For example, the Division lacks documentation explaining why it awarded grant funding to the 14th ranked applicant over the 3rd ranked applicant in the same county.Another example is the Division lacking documentation to explain why one applicant was awarded $6,835 in grant funding without going through the competitive grant award process.Documenting grant award decisions helps justify the Divisionís decisions.(page 12)

 

                 Grant award documentation lacks important terms such as how the Division will make grant payments and how it will monitor grantee activities.The Division should plan what important terms to include in grant award documents so the grantees and the Division know what to expect from each other.Not including important terms can result in difficulties during the payment and monitoring processes.It also does not hold the grantee or Division accountable.(page 12)

 

                 The Divisionís process for awarding grants does not ensure freedom from conflict or undue bias.Three of the five Division employees doing the technical review scored grant applications for grantees they are responsible for monitoring.This can be seen as a conflict of interest.(page 13)

 

                 The Division did not always perform program and fiscal monitoring of grantee activities as required during fiscal year 1999.Of the 62 grants we tested, 18 did not receive a timely program review and 4 did not receive a timely fiscal review.A reason reviews were not done for these grants was the Division did not track which grants had received fiscal and program reviews.Monitoring includes determining if grantee activities are in compliance with grant requirements and service specifications. It also helps determine if grant payments were appropriate. In addition, monitoring grantee activities is an effective way for the Division to ensure Nevadaís seniors are receiving the quality of services described in grant award documents.(page 13)

 


Department of Human Resources

Aging Services Division

 

Agency Response

to Audit Recommendations

 

Recommendation

Number

 

Accepted

Rejected

1

Revise policies and procedures to ensure grants are properly planned and awarded

x

 

2

Establish a policy to ensure grant award decisions and grant terms are properly documented

x

 

3

Develop a method of tracking grants to ensure grants are monitored as required

x

 

TOTALS

 

3

0

 

 


 

Auditorís Comments on Agency Response

 

††††††††††† The Aging Services Division, in its response, does not agree with certain of our findings and conclusions.(See page 18) The following identifies those sections of the report where the Division has taken exception to our position.We have provided our comments on Aging Servicesí response to assure the reader we believe our findings and conclusions, as stated in the report, are appropriate.

 

1.      ††††††††††††††††† Aging Services states the number of grant awards per county, as listed on page 7 of the report, is incorrect, and has provided a revised listing.

 

††††††††††† Legislative Auditorís Comments

 

††††††††††† Our exhibit was prepared using information provided by the Divisionís Community Resource Development Unit to assist in our analysis of its grant management practices.The documents provided by Aging Services that we used in preparing the exhibit combined Title IIIC-1 and Title IIIC-2 awards, and allocated multiple-county awards to specific counties, in the original award amounts.The revised listing provides additional clarification and updated funding amounts.

 

2.      ††††††††††††††††† Aging Services disagrees with the example given on page 12 that indicates an applicant ranked 14th was awarded funding over the 3rd ranked applicant in the same county.Aging Services states that applicants ranked 1st through 9th and the 14th were awarded funding, whereas the 10th through 13th ranked applicants were not funded.

 

††††††††††† Legislative Auditorís Comments

 

††††††††††† Based on agency records, the 3rd ranked applicant for Title IIIB grants in Washoe County did not receive funding.However, the applicant did receive funding in other counties.The Division provided an analysis of the multiple-county funding for this applicant.This analysis indicates that a total of $10,405 was allocated between Lander County and Lyon County, not Washoe County.Therefore, our conclusion that the applicant ranked 14th was awarded funding over the 3rd ranked applicant in the same county (Washoe) is appropriate.