Burgess Amendment to NDAA Passes House

Amendment Makes it Possible to Audit the Pentagon

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Washington, May 22 | Jill Shatzen (202-225-7772) | comments
The House today passed the FY 2015 National Defense Authorization Act, which included an amendment sponsored by Congressman Michael C. Burgess, M.D. (R-TX) that would allow the Congress to see the progress being made by the Pentagon on its required audit.
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Washington, D.C. – The House today passed the FY 2015 National Defense Authorization Act, which included an amendment sponsored by Congressman Michael C. Burgess, M.D. (R-TX) that would allow the Congress to see the progress being made by the Pentagon on its required audit.  

Specifically, this amendment would require the Secretary of Defense to provide Congressional defense committees a short report ranking all military departments and defense agencies in order of how advanced they are in achieving auditable financial statements.

“In order to fulfill its oversight role, the Congress is entitled to this information,” Burgess said.  “Our amendment will, for the first time, provide Congress with concrete, concise information as to how close each part of DOD is to achieving the goal. No such list currently exists, and Congress to date has not required it. This amendment corrects a vital missing piece to this puzzle, and allows the Congress to execute a chief governmental function: oversight.”

Under current law, the Chief Financial Officers Act of 1990 requires federal agencies to pass an independent external audit every year, starting in the 1990s. Yet 20 years later, DOD is the only major agency that is not auditable, according to the Government Accountability Office. While DOD years ago said it would pass an audit by 2017, no progress has shown that to be a likelihood.

This amendment was also sponsored by Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA).

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