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integrity, confidentiality and availability. We continue to work with management in defining the needs, requirements and acquisition strategy to procure the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)/Financial System Replacement System. For this effort, we have provided oversight, counsel and recommendations to define the project goals and objectives and the management tools needed to ensure project success. Lastly, we assisted the Human Resource/Payroll Evaluation Committee in the selection of a new Staff Payroll System.

The House continued to make progress in improving its financial management and operations in CY 2000. For the year ended December 31, 1999, our financial audit validated that since last year's financial audit the House implemented or initiated corrective actions to address a total of 16 prior audit recommendations. These positive efforts reduced the House's five weaknesses to three in this year's report. Based on the effort of the staffs of both the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) and OIG, the Certified Public Accountants were able to express an "unqualified opinion" on the House's financial statements for the second time. The Audit Of The Financial Statements For The Year Ended December 31, 1999, was issued on September 8, 2000. In addition, the Report of Independent Accountants on Compliance with Laws and Regulations, included in the audit report, identified no instances of noncompliance.

Three audits during CY 2000 dealt with improvements to the administration and management of equipment purchases, vehicles, and contracts. The first audit--Office Systems Management's Equipment Procurement And Payment Practices Need Further Improvement--identified areas in the equipment acquisition process where improvements are needed. The audit contained one finding and four recommendations to improve and streamline equipment purchases by the House. The audit--Improved Controls Over House Vehicles Are Needed--identified a number of issues in the management and control over House vehicles. This report included five findings and made 18 recommendations to improve management of leased and owned House vehicles. The audit--Improvements Are Needed In House Contract Administration--provided some good news about effectiveness and efficiency of House acquisitions of goods and services. However, improvements were needed in administering House contracts. We identified one finding and made four recommendations to strengthen contract administration.

In addition to these efforts, we assisted the House Officers by participating on task forces and councils such as the Technology Coordination Task Force and the Information Resources Management Advisory Council to provide advice and counsel on internal controls related to information technology and their current and future use in the House. To continue our oversight role for fire protection, our auditors worked closely with the Superintendent, House Office Buildings, Architect of the Capitol (AOC), to ensure timely and effective implementation of our audit recommendations related to the prior audit. As part of this effort, we attended bi-weekly meetings where the implementation and status of the House's fire protection plan were discussed. We issued the report--Advisory Report On The Fire Protection Systems In The House Complex--that updated the status of the recommendations contained in our original report on fire systems in the House Office Buildings. This report showed improvements to the fire systems, but the AOC still had

fiscal year 2002 and an approximately equal portion each year thereafter. Each year developments in software enable us to achieve incremental efficiencies in our operations. For example, we have now almost completely ceased using the physical mail system, and even the fax system, for delivery of drafts. Almost all attorneys now routinely send documents completely formatted for printing through the House e-mail system to their clients who are then able to print hard copies of those documents at their desk, send them to others by e-mail for review, or publish them immediately, if they so desire, on the World Wide Web. We are continuing to work on other means to improve the performance of our computer and printing systems.

XML Project

Our office has been playing an active role in the work project undertaken by the Clerk of the House in cooperation with the Secretary of the Senate to develop a new system of composing and managing legislative documents, the searching of those documents, and their publication in XML (Extended Markup Language) for transmission and publication on the Internet. The XML task force is comprised of representatives from the Offices of the Clerk and the Secretary, our office, the GPO, the Library of Congress, and others. Hopefully, this project will provide for more rapid and efficient distribution of legislative documents (bills, reports, conference reports, etc.). It will require additional development to allow us to maintain our essential ability to have an instantaneous exchange of documents with the Government Printing Office and the Senate Legislative Counsel.

Retaining a Highly Qualified Staff

Properly drafted legislation is of incalculable value to the House and to the Nation. Poorly drafted legislation can be costly to private parties and to the Government. It can result in unnecessary confusion and delays, allocation of funds in ways not intended by the Congress, and in needless litigation. Many millions of dollars can be wasted or misallocated by reason of mistakes in legislative language. At the same time, the issues before Congress are becoming increasingly complex as time passes, and more often than not, drafting is required under tight time lines.

To respond to the demands of this situation, we select the most highly qualified young lawyers we can find, most often directly out of law school or from judicial clerkships. We then provide them with an extensive apprenticeship, sometimes lasting up to two years, in the basics of drafting. Meanwhile they begin learning several substantive areas of Federal law. We then do our best to retain these valuable people for as long as possible so that we do not lose the benefit of their training and knowledge.

The office is career-oriented. Traditionally we have had a low turnover among the staff. Although we are finding it increasingly difficult to hire and retain highly qualified attorneys, we still have a solid group of thirty-two experienced attorneys with four more in training. Twenty

seven attorneys (75%) have been with the Office for 10 years or more. Twenty-two attorneys (61%) have been in the Office more than 15 years; and ten of our attorneys (28%) have been with the Office for 25 years or more. The knowledge and skill that these experienced people bring to the process of drafting legislation are invaluable to the House and to the Nation.

Despite this outstanding record, because of the dramatic explosion of salaries in private practice it becomes more difficult each year to hire and retain attorneys of the high caliber that we are accustomed to. In the past month we lost one of our most promising young attorneys; and a valuable attorney with five years of experience resigned less than a year ago. We are doing everything we can to maintain an experienced staff of attomeys, but the financial enticements for young attorneys outside of Government are simply too much for some to resist.

Conclusion

Finally, I would like to express my appreciation for the support this subcommittee has given our Office. This has enabled us to maintain the ability to provide quick, efficient, and expert drafting assistance to the Members and committees of the House. We are continuing our efforts to improve our services wherever possible.

Statement of Steven A. McNamara, Inspector General
Office of Inspector General

U.S. House of Representatives

Before the Subcommittee on Legislative Appropriations
House Committee on Appropriations

Chairman Taylor and Members of the Subcommittee, I am both pleased and honored to appear before you today in my capacity as the Inspector General of the House.

I would like to begin by briefly discussing the accomplishments of the Office of Inspector General (OIG) during the second session of the 106th Congress as well as the initiatives currently underway pursuant to our proposed Calendar Year (CY) 2001 Annual Audit Plan (AAP). I will then discuss the resources required to provide quality audit/investigative services to the House in Fiscal Year (FY) 2002.

Accomplishments During the Second Session of the 106th Congress

During the second session of the 106th Congress, we continued to identify areas needing administrative and financial improvement. In CY 2000, we issued eight reports and made 45 recommendations for corrective action and identified numerous material internal control weaknesses. In addition, we currently have 13 audits in progress.

For CY 2000, we issued three confidential audits that addressed operating systems, data center and network security. The first of these--Windows NT Administration Can Be Improved With Use Of Established Guidance--found no serious vulnerabilities that would jeopardize the security of the overall House intranet but did find various Windows NT security vulnerabilities in individual offices. Management took immediate corrective action to correct these vulnerabilities. A second report, Physical Access Controls in the House Data Center--reported the need to strengthen the physical access and detection controls over the House data center. Management implemented our corrective actions prior to the issuance of the report. The third report, Backbone Ubiquitous Data Network (BUDnet) Controls Were Generally Effective--assessed the high-speed backbone network that provides connectivity to computer systems and supports the local area networks of the various House offices. The audit found that the access controls minimized the vulnerabilities that threaten the network from external and internal attacks. However, we did identify several areas where security of the House BUDnet could be enhanced. Management promptly initiated the recommended enhancements found during the audit.

Our audit staff also provides management advisory services related to the House's efforts in procuring and developing new systems using the House's System Development Life Cycle procedures. During CY 2000, we assisted in the planning, development and testing of the Fixed Asset Inventory Management System so that management can be assured that the system, when placed into production, meets its goals for information

integrity, confidentiality and availability. We continue to work with management in defining the needs, requirements and acquisition strategy to procure the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)/Financial System Replacement System. For this effort, we have provided oversight, counsel and recommendations to define the project goals and objectives and the management tools needed to ensure project success. Lastly, we assisted the Human Resource/Payroll Evaluation Committee in the selection of a new Staff Payroll System.

The House continued to make progress in improving its financial management and operations in CY 2000. For the year ended December 31, 1999, our financial audit validated that since last year's financial audit the House implemented or initiated corrective actions to address a total of 16 prior audit recommendations. These positive efforts reduced the House's five weaknesses to three in this year's report. Based on the effort of the staffs of both the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) and OIG, the Certified Public Accountants were able to express an "unqualified opinion" on the House's financial statements for the second time. The Audit Of The Financial Statements For The Year Ended December 31, 1999, was issued on September 8, 2000. In addition, the Report of Independent Accountants on Compliance with Laws and Regulations, included in the audit report, identified no instances of noncompliance.

Three audits during CY 2000 dealt with improvements to the administration and management of equipment purchases, vehicles, and contracts. The first audit--Office Systems Management's Equipment Procurement And Payment Practices Need Further Improvement--identified areas in the equipment acquisition process where improvements are needed. The audit contained one finding and four recommendations to improve and streamline equipment purchases by the House. The audit--Improved Controls Over House Vehicles Are Needed--identified a number of issues in the management and control over House vehicles. This report included five findings and made 18 recommendations to improve management of leased and owned House vehicles. The audit--Improvements Are Needed In House Contract Administration--provided some good news about effectiveness and efficiency of House acquisitions of goods and services. However, improvements were needed in administering House contracts. We identified one finding and made four recommendations to strengthen contract administration.

In addition to these efforts, we assisted the House Officers by participating on task forces and councils such as the Technology Coordination Task Force and the Information Resources Management Advisory Council to provide advice and counsel on internal controls related to information technology and their current and future use in the House. To continue our oversight role for fire protection, our auditors worked closely with the Superintendent, House Office Buildings, Architect of the Capitol (AOC), to ensure timely and effective implementation of our audit recommendations related to the prior audit. As part of this effort, we attended bi-weekly meetings where the implementation and status of the House's fire protection plan were discussed. We issued the report--Advisory Report On The Fire Protection Systems In The House Complex--that updated the status of the recommendations contained in our original report on fire systems in the House Office Buildings. This report showed improvements to the fire systems, but the AOC still had

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