Defense

September 17, 2012

Leaders to committee: Air Force on track for 2014 auditability deadline

Leaders from each armed service and the Defense Department testified Sept. 14 to the House Armed Services Committee about the DOD’s efforts to become auditable by 2014.

The original auditable date was 2017, but Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta accelerated that goal in late 2011 by setting a DOD-wide 2014 deadline for audit readiness.

“We remain fully committed to meeting our audit goals, and we’re reasonably confident that we will meet those goals and the timeframes that have been established by us,” said Robert Hale, undersecretary of defense (comptroller).

“The Air Force is faithfully committed to maintaining the public’s trust in our stewardship of taxpayer dollars and developing a culture that values efficiency in resource stewardship,” said Marilyn Thomas, Air Force principal deputy assistant secretary for financial management and comptroller. “Due to the commitment of leadership and to the dedication of professionals across the Air Force, we have made significant progress today.”

Hale said meeting these goals is important for many factors, but the most important reason is to maintain public confidence.

“I don’t think we’ll ever convince the American public, and I don’t think we’ll convince Congress, that we’re good stewards of their funds unless we can pass an audit test,” said Hale.

He pointed out that he was cautiously optimistic, knowing that each service faces several challenges to meet the auditability deadline.

The Air Force still faces challenges including the need to improve legacy systems in order to achieve the accelerated timeline, educating Airmen on how they contribute to audit readiness, and building the skills and experience required to achieve and maintain audit readiness in all resource management specialties, Thomas said.

Another hurdle facing all the services, Hale said, is the difficulties involved in getting a beginning balance for DOD programs such as aircraft and ship acquisitions, which have been ongoing for more than a few years.

“Some of these transactions and beginning balances can go back ten years or more,” said Hale. The plan moving forward is to begin with this year’s current resources and build better documentation going forward. But he emphasized the fact that even though DOD financial statements have not been audited in the past, “we still know where we’re spending taxpayer dollars. If that weren’t the case, you’d see massive problems with missed payments and mission failures.”

Texas Rep. Michael Conaway asked Hale and the service members to convey the committee’s heartfelt thanks to all the people out there doing the “heavy-lifting” to get the DOD auditable.

“I, for one, know how hard it is (and) how difficult it is,” said Conaway. He said the scope of this project is “simply stunning once you begin to look at it.”

“Thank you so very much for what you have done already, and (we’re) looking forward to success of getting this thing done,” said the representative.

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
navy-china

USS Fort Worth conducts CUES with Chinese Navy

The littoral combat ship USS Fort Worth (LCS 3) practiced the Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea (CUES) with the People’s Liberation Army-Navy Jiangkai II frigate Hengshui (FFG 572) Feb. 23 enhancing the professional ma...
 
 

AEGIS tracks, simulates engagement of three short-range ballistic missiles

The Missile Defense Agency and sailors aboard the guided-missile destroyers USS Carney (DDG 64), USS Gonzalez (DDG 66), and USS Barry (DDG 52) successfully completed a flight test involving the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense weapon system. At approximately 2:30 a.m., EST, Feb. 26, three short-range ballistic missile targets were launched near simultaneously from NASA’s Wallops...
 
 

DOD seeks novel ideas to shape its technological future

The Defense Department is seeking novel ideas to shape its future, and officials are looking to industry, small business, academia, start-ups, the public – anyone, really – to boost its ability to prevail against adversaries whose access to technology grows daily. The program, called the Long-Range Research and Development Plan, or LRRDP, began with an...
 

 

Air Force places 18 A-10 aircraft into ‘Backup Status’

The Air Force, with congressional authorization, will convert 18 primary combat-coded A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft from active units and place them into Backup-Aircraft Inventory status with the possibility to convert another 18 at a later date in fiscal year 2015. The secretary of Defense has authorized the Air Force to place up to a total...
 
 

AFRL shape-changing materials make form a function

Air Force Research Laboratory research is shaping the future of aerospace. Through research into soft materials called liquid crystal elastomers, AFRL scientists have developed a method to locally program the mechanical response in polymer sheets without the use of actuators and traditional mechanical parts. This research (sponsored by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research)...
 
 
Sensor Concepts Inc. photograph

Air Force Research Labís handheld imaging tool expands aircraft inspection capability

Sensor Concepts Inc. photograph An operator demonstrates the portability of the handheld imaging tool. The technology provides maintainers the ability to evaluate aircraft in the field to ensure mission-readiness. When pilots c...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>