720-913-5000 auditor@denvergov.org

What We Do

Internal auditing focuses on identifying risks that threaten the ability of an organization to accomplish its mission. The Auditor’s Office conducts independent audits of city agencies to help mitigate identified risks in order to enhance efficiency and effectiveness, reduce costs, and improve the quality of services.

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Audit Reports

 
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Annual Documents

Audit Committee

 

The results of conducted audits are communicated through formal audit reports, which communicate findings and recommendations for improvement to the audited agency, oversight officials, and the public. Additionally, the Auditor’s Office conducts follow-up work to verify that corrective actions have been taken to address findings, and publishes follow-up reports.

Audits from 2015 – present can be found here.

Audits prior to 2015 can be found here

The Annual Audit Plan is a list of potential audits of City departments, programs, or contracts developed from an ongoing process of assessing potential risks and collecting input from a variety of sources.

View the plan.

The Audit Committee receives the reports of audits conducted by the Audit Services. Additionally, the Audit Committee commissions and oversees an annual independent external audit of the finances of the City and County of Denver.

Audit Committee

TV8 videos of Audit Committee meetings

Determining What to Audit

A high-quality and transparent annual audit plan is critical for meeting the mission of the Denver Auditor’s Office. Developing the plan is an ongoing process, conducted by assembling ideas from a variety of sources, examining a broad range of City activities, and then assessing risk factors in tandem with some additional considerations. By evaluating potential audits from a variety of perspectives, the Auditor’s Office seeks to provide widespread audit coverage both in terms of the types of audits performed and the entities assessed. This approach results in a diverse list of departments, programs, activities, and contracts that are examined to determine the extent to which they are operating efficiently, effectively, and in accordance with program or contract requirements.

In developing a list of potential audits, ideas come from a variety of sources:

  • Assessments of operations and controls derived from previous internal and external audits, including independent audits of the City’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR), the audit of federal compliance, and audit management letters;
  • Input from the community, elected officials, Audit Committee members, operational management, and staff;
  • Benchmarking against the audit priorities of other governmental entities;
  • Consideration of current local events, financial conditions, major capital projects, and public policy issues; and
  • Established industry risk-assessment criteria, including from the U.S. Government Accountability Office and the Institute of Internal Auditors.

A robust audit plan will assess a broad range of City activities, including:

  • Organizational units within a City agency, such as a division or a department;
  • Individual City programs and activities;
  • Transaction cycles or processes that affect more than one City function or department, such as contract procurement and purchasing, cash handling, human resources, and/or information technology;
  • Individual financial statement accounts and transactional areas, such as capital assets, leave liability, accounts payable, and payroll;
  • City functions that operate similarly to for-profit entities, such as Denver International Airport and the Golf Enterprise Fund; and
  • Contracts and agreements between the City and third parties.

Potential audits are identified and prioritized using a risk-based approach by examining a variety of factors that may expose the City to fraud, misappropriation of funds, liability, or reputational harm.

Accordingly, risk factors are assessed by reviewing:

  • Size of department, program, activity, or contract
  • Size of budget
  • Compliance and regulations
  • Pending or recent legislation
  • Complexity of transactions
  • Fiscal sustainability
  • Critical IT systems, including hardware and software
  • Management accountability
  • Quality of internal control system
  • Age of program, operation, or contract
  • Audit history
  • Public health and safety
  • Critical infrastructure
  • Short-term and long-term strategic risks
  • Related litigation
  • Relevant case law
  • Emerging risk areas

Risk factors are periodically evaluated and modified as necessary. In tandem with risk-based considerations, some additional considerations also provide practical guidance in determining which audits to pursue. First and foremost, resource constraints within the Auditor’s Office inherently limit the amount of audit work performed in one year. Furthermore, deference is given to the unique interests and responsibilities of the Auditor as an elected official and the risks the Auditor identifies as a priority to serve the interests of the City and its people. After the plan is finalized, new information may come to light; situations, initiatives, priorities, and risks within the City may change. The flexible nature of the audit plan as a living document provides the discretion to change course when it is in the best interest of the City.

The Auditor’s Office extends its gratitude and appreciation to the Mayor’s Office, the City Council, the Audit Committee, members of the city’s operational management, and members of the general public for providing input on the 2017 Audit Plan and for supporting the general mission of our Office throughout the year.

The Denver Auditor’s Office provides independent oversight of how tax dollars are spent to fund the City’s many services, initiatives, and programs. The Denver City Charter, Article V, establishes this independence and provides for the Auditor’s general authority and duties. The Charter also establishes the Audit Committee, through which we report our audit findings.

History

Originally, the Auditor served as the general accountant for the City, maintaining the City’s financial records and paying City expenses, including payroll. However, in November 2006, Denver voters approved an amendment to the City Charter, changing the duties of the Auditor that had been in place since 1904. Based on this Charter revision, accounting and payroll functions moved to the Controller’s Office under the Chief Financial Officer in June 2007. This revision plus other ordinances authorized the Auditor to conduct audits of any entity using City dollars. Today, Denver’s Auditor oversees one of the most structurally independent government audit functions in the country.

Several key components serve as the cornerstone for Denver’s auditing framework. These elements provide the Auditor with the independence that results in the Office’s ability to conduct high-impact audits.

  • Elected Auditor ― The City and County of Denver has an elected Auditor who is independent from all other elected officials and operational management.
  • Audit Committee ― The City Charter establishes an independent Audit Committee, chaired by the Auditor, with six other members appointed by the Mayor, City Council, and Auditor.
  • Comprehensive Access ― City Charter and Municipal Code authorize the Auditor to have access to all officers, employees, records, and property maintained by the City and County of Denver, and to all external entities, records, and personnel related to their business interactions with the City.
  • Audit Response Requirements ― City ordinance requires that audited City and County departments formally respond to all audit findings and recommendations, establishing the Auditor’s Office’s ability to work in conjunction with these departments while maintaining its independence.
  • Adherence to Professional Audit Standards ― The Auditor’s Office conducts all audits in accordance with Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards promulgated by the United States Comptroller General.

Please see the Archives for a full list of these documents and more.

Recent Audits

Denver Real Estate Failed to Take Comprehensive Approach to Property Planning

DENVER – The city’s Division of Real Estate isn’t taking a comprehensive approach to tracking city property or to long-term planning, however division officials say they are starting to make changes, according to a new audit report this month from Denver Auditor...

Denver Needs a Centralized, Accessible, and Transparent Records Request Process

DENVER – Denver leaders need to do more to fully and transparently respond to open records requests from the public, according to a new audit from Denver Auditor Timothy M. O’Brien, CPA. Our audit examined Denver’s response to records requests compared to other...

Denver Is Inefficient and Ineffective in Verifying Accurate Marijuana Tax Collection

DENVER – Denver is not effectively making sure marijuana businesses pay the taxes they owe to Denver and that the city is collecting those taxes, according to a new audit report out today from Denver Auditor Timothy M. O’Brien, CPA. “When voters approved marijuana...

Wastewater Management Doing More to Monitor Construction Costs

DENVER – Denver’s Wastewater Management Division is doing more to ensure taxpayers get what they paid for on the division’s construction projects, according to a follow-up report out today from Denver Auditor Timothy M. O’Brien, CPA. “I am pleased to see Wastewater...

Denver Police Largely Managing Grant Funds Successfully but Could Better Observe Policies and Procedures

DENVER – The Denver Police Department is doing a generally good job managing its High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas grant funds, but there are some smaller bookkeeping essentials the department needs to clean up, according to a recent audit from Denver Auditor...
City Real Estate Portfolio Practices

City Real Estate Portfolio Practices

Open Records Request Process

Open Records Request Process

Marijuana Taxation

Marijuana Taxation

Follow-up: Contractor Hiring and Payment Processes

Follow-up: Contractor Hiring and Payment Processes

High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas Grant

High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas Grant

Follow-up: Capital Assets

Follow-up: Capital Assets

Follow-up: Special Revenue Funds

Follow-up: Special Revenue Funds

Board of Ethics and Clerk and Recorder’s Office

Board of Ethics and Clerk and Recorder’s Office

Public Works Asset Management Software Applications

Public Works Asset Management Software Applications

2019 Continuous Auditing Update

2019 Continuous Auditing Update

Follow-up: Debt Management

Follow-up: Debt Management

Workday Post Implementation Assessment

Workday Post Implementation Assessment

Follow-up: Governmental Activities Receivables

Follow-up: Governmental Activities Receivables

Follow-up: Compensation and Benefits

Follow-up: Compensation and Benefits

Follow-up: Contract Controls in Alfresco

Follow-up: Contract Controls in Alfresco

Follow-up: Purchasing and Payment Processes

Follow-up: Purchasing and Payment Processes

Follow-up: Indirect Cost Accounting Practices

Follow-up: Indirect Cost Accounting Practices

Denver Employees Retirement Plan Actuarial Valuation

Denver Employees Retirement Plan Actuarial Valuation

Interstate Highway Construction Inc. Contract

Interstate Highway Construction Inc. Contract

Follow-up: Building Permits

Follow-up: Building Permits

Follow-up: Airport Parking Revenue

Follow-up: Airport Parking Revenue

Follow-up: PetroPro Engineering Inc. Contract

Follow-up: PetroPro Engineering Inc. Contract

Follow-up: Flog, LLC at Willis Case

Follow-up: Flog, LLC at Willis Case

Follow-up: Pahaska Tepee Concessions, LLC

Follow-up: Pahaska Tepee Concessions, LLC

Follow-up: Workforce Development

Follow-up: Workforce Development

Denver Preschool Program

Denver Preschool Program

Property Tax Assessment Process

Property Tax Assessment Process

Urban Area Security Initiative Grant

Urban Area Security Initiative Grant

Airport Improvement Program Grants

Airport Improvement Program Grants

Accounts Receivable – Denver International Airport

Accounts Receivable – Denver International Airport

Cybersecurity Operations – Denver International Airport

Cybersecurity Operations – Denver International Airport

Follow-up: Denver Botanic Gardens

Follow-up: Denver Botanic Gardens

Preserving Affordable Housing for Denver Residents

Preserving Affordable Housing for Denver Residents

Property Tax Spending for Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

Property Tax Spending for Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

Data Analytics Update

Data Analytics Update

Follow-up: Aramark Concessions Revenues

Follow-up: Aramark Concessions Revenues

Follow-up: Parks Permitting Program

Follow-up: Parks Permitting Program

Contract Procurement Processes

Contract Procurement Processes

Follow-up: Software Asset Management

Follow-up: Software Asset Management

Follow-up: Personally Identifiable Information in Salesforce

Follow-up: Personally Identifiable Information in Salesforce

Follow-up: Golf Enterprise Fund

Follow-up: Golf Enterprise Fund

Denver’s Road Home – Homeless Services

Denver’s Road Home – Homeless Services

Workday User Access Controls

Workday User Access Controls

Jail Safety

Jail Safety

Denver Public Trustee

Denver Public Trustee

Halcyon Construction Inc. On-Call Contract

Halcyon Construction Inc. On-Call Contract

Westin Hotel Revenue

Westin Hotel Revenue

Data Centers

Data Centers

Follow-Up: Real Estate Leases

Follow-Up: Real Estate Leases

Follow-Up: Payroll Systems Conversion and Internal Controls

Follow-Up: Payroll Systems Conversion and Internal Controls

2018 Continuous Auditing Report

2018 Continuous Auditing Report

Denver County Courts – Court Operations

Denver County Courts – Court Operations

Affordable Housing

Affordable Housing

Denver Performing Arts Center: Follow-Up

Denver Performing Arts Center: Follow-Up

Denver Employee Retirement Plan: Follow-Up

Denver Employee Retirement Plan: Follow-Up

Continuity of Operations: Follow-up

Continuity of Operations: Follow-up

Red Rocks: Follow-Up

Red Rocks: Follow-Up

Denver International Airport Airside Construction: Follow-Up

Denver International Airport Airside Construction: Follow-Up

Department of Finance Investment Evaluation: Follow-Up

Department of Finance Investment Evaluation: Follow-Up

Short-Term Rental Enforcement: Follow-Up

Short-Term Rental Enforcement: Follow-Up

IT Projects Intake: Follow-up

IT Projects Intake: Follow-up

Workers’ Compensation Program

Workers’ Compensation Program

Cybersecurity Assessment

Cybersecurity Assessment

Purchasing and Payment Processes

Purchasing and Payment Processes

Agency for Human Rights and Community Partnerships Disability Parking Enforcement Program: Follow-up

Agency for Human Rights and Community Partnerships Disability Parking Enforcement Program: Follow-up

Denver Human Services Child Welfare Services Audit: Follow-up

Denver Human Services Child Welfare Services Audit: Follow-up

DIA – Airport Security

DIA – Airport Security

Denver County Court: IT General Controls

Denver County Court: IT General Controls

Department of Parks and Recreation: Pahaska Tepee Concessions, LLC

Department of Parks and Recreation: Pahaska Tepee Concessions, LLC

Department of Parks & Recreation: Flog, LLC at Willis Case

Department of Parks & Recreation: Flog, LLC at Willis Case

Denver Botanic Gardens

Denver Botanic Gardens

Workforce Development

Workforce Development

Personally Identifiable Information Audit: Follow-Up

Personally Identifiable Information Audit: Follow-Up

Indirect Cost Accounting Practices

Indirect Cost Accounting Practices

Cybersecurity Assessment

Cybersecurity Assessment

Denver Fire Department Resource Allocation Practices Audit: Follow-up

Denver Fire Department Resource Allocation Practices Audit: Follow-up

Office of Human Resources – Compensation and Benefits

Office of Human Resources – Compensation and Benefits

Department of Finance and Public Works – Debt Management

Department of Finance and Public Works – Debt Management

DIA – Rental Car Agreement: Follow-Up

DIA – Rental Car Agreement: Follow-Up

Denver Zoo – Cooperative Agreement: Follow-Up

Denver Zoo – Cooperative Agreement: Follow-Up

Aramark Concession Revenues

Aramark Concession Revenues

Capital Assets: Building and Equipment

Capital Assets: Building and Equipment

Technology Services and Finance GenTax System: Follow-Up

Technology Services and Finance GenTax System: Follow-Up

IT Service Desk: Follow-Up

IT Service Desk: Follow-Up

Denver International Airport PetroPro Engineering Inc. Contract

Denver International Airport PetroPro Engineering Inc. Contract

Information Systems Cybersecurity Assessment

Information Systems Cybersecurity Assessment

Denver Elections Division Risk-Limiting Audit Process

Denver Elections Division Risk-Limiting Audit Process

Denver International Airport Parking Revenue

Denver International Airport Parking Revenue

IT Asset Management: Follow-Up

IT Asset Management: Follow-Up

DIA Airline Agreements: Follow-Up

DIA Airline Agreements: Follow-Up

Denver Sheriff Department

Denver Sheriff Department

Government Activities Receivables

Government Activities Receivables

Cash Handling Practices: Follow-Up

Cash Handling Practices: Follow-Up

Office of Marijuana Policy: Follow-Up

Office of Marijuana Policy: Follow-Up

Office of Sustainability: Follow-Up

Office of Sustainability: Follow-Up

Contract Controls in Alfresco

Contract Controls in Alfresco

Short-Term Rental Enforcement

Short-Term Rental Enforcement

Continuity of Operations

Continuity of Operations

Community Planning and Development Zoning Administration: Follow-Up

Community Planning and Development Zoning Administration: Follow-Up

Software Asset Management Assessment

Software Asset Management Assessment

Denver Employees Retirement Plan Investment

Denver Employees Retirement Plan Investment

Audit of Rocky Mountain Human Services: Follow-Up

Audit of Rocky Mountain Human Services: Follow-Up

Parks & Rec Contract Administration Practices: Follow-Up

Parks & Rec Contract Administration Practices: Follow-Up

Municipal Sales Tax Collection Practices: Follow-Up

Municipal Sales Tax Collection Practices: Follow-Up

Civil Service Commission: Follow-Up

Civil Service Commission: Follow-Up

Child Welfare Services

Child Welfare Services

Special Revenue Funds

Special Revenue Funds

Audit of Police Operations: Follow-Up

Audit of Police Operations: Follow-Up

Denver Health Operating Agreement: Follow-Up

Denver Health Operating Agreement: Follow-Up

Information Systems Assessment

Information Systems Assessment

Payroll System Conversion and Internal Controls

Payroll System Conversion and Internal Controls

Board of Adjustment for Zoning Appeals: Follow-Up

Board of Adjustment for Zoning Appeals: Follow-Up

Community Planning and Development – Building Permits

Community Planning and Development – Building Permits

Open Media Foundation Contract: Follow-Up

Open Media Foundation Contract: Follow-Up

Coliseum and DPAC Event Contracts

Coliseum and DPAC Event Contracts

Technology Services IT Project Intake

Technology Services IT Project Intake

Privatization Practices: Follow-Up

Privatization Practices: Follow-Up

Wastewater Management Contractor Practices

Wastewater Management Contractor Practices

DIA Airside Construction

DIA Airside Construction

Personally Identifiable Information in Salesforce

Personally Identifiable Information in Salesforce

Real Estate Leases

Real Estate Leases

Data Driven Policing

Data Driven Policing

Citywide Land and Infrastructure Capital Assets: Follow-Up

Citywide Land and Infrastructure Capital Assets: Follow-Up

Golf Enterprise Fund

Golf Enterprise Fund

Peoplesoft Journal Entry

Peoplesoft Journal Entry

DIA Airport Concession Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (ACDBE) Program: Follow-Up

DIA Airport Concession Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (ACDBE) Program: Follow-Up

Technology Services and Finance GenTax System

Technology Services and Finance GenTax System

Department of Finance Investment Evaluation

Department of Finance Investment Evaluation

Parks Permitting Program

Parks Permitting Program

DIA Emergency Preparedness Program: Follow-Up

DIA Emergency Preparedness Program: Follow-Up

Audit of Budget and Management Office: Follow-Up

Audit of Budget and Management Office: Follow-Up

Accounting Services: Follow-Up

Accounting Services: Follow-Up

Citywide Information Security Assessment

Citywide Information Security Assessment

Red Rocks Event Contracts

Red Rocks Event Contracts

Stormwater Administration: Follow-Up

Stormwater Administration: Follow-Up

Industrial Control Systems: Follow-Up

Industrial Control Systems: Follow-Up

Public Works Denver Moves: Follow-Up

Public Works Denver Moves: Follow-Up

Denver International Airport Rental Car Agreements

Denver International Airport Rental Car Agreements

Denver Zoo Cooperative Agreement

Denver Zoo Cooperative Agreement

Denver Affordable Housing: Follow-Up

Denver Affordable Housing: Follow-Up

Denver Sheriff’s Department Jail Operations: Follow-Up

Denver Sheriff’s Department Jail Operations: Follow-Up

Denver’s Road Home: Follow-Up

Denver’s Road Home: Follow-Up

Family and Medical Leave Act Administration: Follow-Up

Family and Medical Leave Act Administration: Follow-Up

Personally Identifiable Information

Personally Identifiable Information

Office of Sustainability

Office of Sustainability

Civil Service Commission

Civil Service Commission

DIA Airline Agreements

DIA Airline Agreements

Fire Department Resource Allocation Practices

Fire Department Resource Allocation Practices

Information Systems Maturity Assessment

Information Systems Maturity Assessment

Office of Marijuana Policy

Office of Marijuana Policy

Cash Handling Practices

Cash Handling Practices

Police Response Time: Follow-Up

Police Response Time: Follow-Up

DIA Hotel and Transit Center: Follow-Up

DIA Hotel and Transit Center: Follow-Up

DIA Hotel and Transit Center Project Integration: Follow-Up

DIA Hotel and Transit Center Project Integration: Follow-Up

Municipal Sales Tax Collection Practices

Municipal Sales Tax Collection Practices

Disability Parking Enforcement Program

Disability Parking Enforcement Program

Mobile Devices: Follow-Up

Mobile Devices: Follow-Up

Parks and Rec Contract Administration Practices

Parks and Rec Contract Administration Practices

DIA Information Technologies Project Life Cycle: Follow-Up

DIA Information Technologies Project Life Cycle: Follow-Up

Police Administration – TeleStaff System: Follow-Up

Police Administration – TeleStaff System: Follow-Up

Peak Academy: Follow-Up

Peak Academy: Follow-Up

Medical Marijuana Taxation: Follow-Up

Medical Marijuana Taxation: Follow-Up

Minority/Women Business Enterprise Program: Follow-Up

Minority/Women Business Enterprise Program: Follow-Up

Change Management Practices: Follow-Up

Change Management Practices: Follow-Up

Urban Renewal: Follow-Up

Urban Renewal: Follow-Up

Innovation Fund: Follow-Up

Innovation Fund: Follow-Up

Board of Adjustment for Zoning Appeals

Board of Adjustment for Zoning Appeals

IT Service Desk

IT Service Desk

IT Asset Management

IT Asset Management

Business Improvement Districts: Follow-Up

Business Improvement Districts: Follow-Up

Citywide Land and Infrastructure Capital Assets

Citywide Land and Infrastructure Capital Assets

Accounting Services

Accounting Services

Open Media Foundation Contract

Open Media Foundation Contract

Denver Health Operating Agreement

Denver Health Operating Agreement

Audit of Police Operations

Audit of Police Operations

Audit of Budget and Management Office

Audit of Budget and Management Office

Audit of Rocky Mountain Human Services

Audit of Rocky Mountain Human Services

DIA Emergency Preparedness Program

DIA Emergency Preparedness Program

Peak Academy

Peak Academy

Community Planning and Development Zoning Administration

Community Planning and Development Zoning Administration

Police Administration – TeleStaff System

Police Administration – TeleStaff System

Family and Medical Leave Act Administration

Family and Medical Leave Act Administration

DIA Information Technologies Project Life Cycle

DIA Information Technologies Project Life Cycle

Innovation Fund

Innovation Fund

Public Works Denver Moves

Public Works Denver Moves

Privatization Practices

Privatization Practices

Industrial Control Systems

Industrial Control Systems

DIA Airport Concession Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (ACDBE) Program

DIA Airport Concession Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (ACDBE) Program

DIA Hotel and Transit Center Project Integration

DIA Hotel and Transit Center Project Integration

Denver’s Road Home

Denver’s Road Home

Denver Sheriff’s Department Jail Operations

Denver Sheriff’s Department Jail Operations

Stormwater Administration

Stormwater Administration

Audits At A Glance

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Contact Audit Services

Call Us: 720-913-5000

Email: auditor@denvergov.org