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3.2 Governance and Administration

Comprehensive Standard:

3.2.2.2 The legal authority and operating control of the institution are clearly defined for the follwoing areas within the institution's governance structure: fiscal stability of the institution. (Governing board control)

Statement of Compliance:   In Compliance.

Narrative:

The Business & Finance Division is of the primary unit responsible for financial activity and the measurement and maintenance of financial stability at the University of West Georgia.  The Division of Business & Finance adheres to the policies and procedures outlined in both the Board of Regents Policy Manual [1] and the Board of Regents Business Procedures Manual [2], since the Board of Regents is the governing board of the University of West Georgia (as discussed in the narrative for Core Requirement 2.2).  

Board of Regents policy governs the activities of the University of West Georgia Division of Business & Finance. As specified in the Board of Regents Policy Manual Section 7.0: Finance and Business: Introduction:

"Section 7.0, Finance and Business, covers all aspects of finance and business activities at all University System of Georgia (USG institutions, including the general policy, the USG budget, tuition and fees, private donations to the USG and its institutions, fund management, travel, purchasing, insurance, contracts, auditing, miscellaneous, information security policy, the Board of Regents? Retiree Health Benefit Fund investment policy, and identity theft" [3].

Section 7.0 details the responsibility for the assessment of the fiscal stability of the University System of Georgia which includes the University of West Georgia. The legal authority and process of review for the University System of Georgia is set forth in §7.1.1 Allocation of Funds; §7.1.2 Accounting and Reporting: §7.1.2.2 deficits; and §7.1.2 Accounting and Reporting: §7.1.2.3 Financial Report. Fiscal stability as lack of financial system vulnerability is addressed in §7.2-§7.16 [3].

In addition to the Board of Regents’ policies and procedures regarding legal authority and operating responsibility, the Business & Finance Division of the University of West Georgia has developed a "Delegation of Authority Matrix" [4]. The "Delegation of Authority Matrix" clearly stipulates to the hierarchy of legal authority for all University of West Georgia financial matters. For example, the matrix indicates that there are five primary delegates for all financial matters within University of West Georgia. These primary delegates are: the President of the University, the Chancellor of the Board of Regents, the Board of Regents, the University System of Georgia Division of Administrative Services, and the University of West Georgia Vice President for Business & Finance. The responsibilities of each and their duties are stipulated to in the matrix. The Delegation of Authority Matrix may be changed at any time at the discretion of the President and does not include delegated authorities for any affiliated University Foundation.    

The conformity of the University of West Georgia with the appropriate principles and policies for fiscal management is monitored by the Georgia Department of Audits and Accounts [5]. Under the authority granted by the Official Code of Georgia Annotated § 50-6-6, the Georgia Department of Audits and Accounts audits the financial statements for all Georgia state agencies on an annual basis. The Official Code of Georgia Annotated § 50-6-6 specifies:

(a) "It shall be the duty of the Department of Audits and Accounts thoroughly to audit and check the books and accounts of the county superintendents of schools and treasurers of local school systems, of municipal systems, of the several units of the University System of Georgia...

(c) All audits of such public school systems shall be conducted in conformity with generally accepted standards and principles of governmental accounting and auditing and shall be subject to the standards, rules, and ethics promulgated by the Georgia Society of Certified Public Accountants and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants..." [6].

As part of the annual review process, the Georgia Department of Audits and Accounts also prepares an "Agreed Upon Procedures Report" that outlines the internal controls that are in place for monitoring the required financial reporting and compliance with the rules and regulations set forth in the state of Georgia's Government Auditing Standards.  The annual financial statements and the auditors’ opinions are posted on the Controller’s website [7].

A complete financial audit of the University of West Georgia is conducted by the Georgia Department of Audits and Accounts every five to seven years [7].

 The narrative for Core Requirement 2.11.1, also, discusses the financial stability of the University of West Georgia as it relates to the scope of the University of West Georgia Mission. The narrative for Comprehensive Standard 3.10.1 provides additional information on the financial stability of the University of West Georgia.  Moreover, the narratives for Comprehensive Standards 3.10.1, 3.10.2, 3.10.3, and 3.10.4 provide information on University of West Georgia financial resources.           

Supporting Documentation: