For the 11th consecutive year, The North Carolina Partnership for Children, Inc. (NCPC) has a “clean bill” of financial health, according to the Office of State Auditor. An audit of Fiscal Year 2011-2012 activities found the organization was in compliance and had appropriate internal controls. In addition, in keeping with legislative requirements, 39 Smart Start local partnerships also were audited with no findings.
Smart Start’s high standards of accountability were reaffirmed by the State Auditor’s decision to discontinue planned financial-related audits with a statewide scope. These audits were new and in addition to the biennial audits required by law. However, after performing seven (out of 76), the Office of the State Auditor informed NCPC that:
“Our original plan had been to perform a financial related audit with a standard scope at all of the partnerships over a period of four years. However, our results to date indicate that the audits are not necessary at this time.”
The Smart Start system at the state and local level is an accountable and responsible steward of public resources as evidenced in these audit results. In addition to state funds, federal and private funders invest millions of dollars in North Carolina’s early childhood system because Smart Start provides a reliable and trustworthy infrastructure in each local community.
NCPC ensures that Smart Start fully meets all legislatively mandated requirements and operates to the highest standards of effectiveness, accountability, efficiency and integrity. It does this while also allowing North Carolina’s early childhood system to quickly move resources to serve children. Together, 78 separate organizations (NCPC and 77 independent local partnerships) were able to budget resources effectively, reverting 0.037% in FY 2011-12.
In the past ten years, NCPC and Smart Start local partnerships have been audited more than 450 times by State auditors and/or independent auditors. Auditors look for compliance in three core areas: accuracy of financial statements; how the partnership processes and authorizes transactions such as grants, accounts payable, payroll and cash receipts; and contract compliance.
The 39 Smart Start Local Partnerships audited this year include:
• Albemarle Smart Start Partnership, Inc.
• Alleghany Partnership for Children, Inc.
• Ashe County Partnership for Children
• Avery County Smart Start: A Partnership for Children
• Buncombe County Partnership for Children, Inc.
• Cabarrus County Partnership for Children
• Caswell County Partnership for Children
• Catawba County Partnership for Children
• Children & Youth Partnership for Dare County, Inc.
• Children’s Council of Watauga County, Inc.
• Columbus County Partnership for Children, Incorporated
• Craven Smart Start, Inc.
• Down East Partnership for Children
• Duplin County Partnership for Children
• Durham’s Partnership for Children
• Iredell County Partnership for Young Children, Inc.
• Lee County Partnership for Children
• Martin/Pitt Partnership for Children, Inc.
• McDowell Partnership for Children (Now part of Partnership for Children of the Foothills)
• Mecklenburg Partnership for Children
• Onslow County Partnership for Children, Inc.
• Partners for Children & Families, Inc. (Moore County)
• Partnership for Children of Cumberland County, Inc.
• Region A Partnership for Children
• Robeson County Partnership for Children, Inc.
• Rockingham County Partnership for Children, Inc.
• Sampson County Partnership for Children
• Scotland County Partnership for Children and Families, Inc.
• Smart Start of Davidson County, Inc.
• Smart Start of Forsyth County
• Smart Start of New Hanover County
• Smart Start of Pender County, Inc.
• Smart Start Rowan, Inc.
• Stanly County Partnership for Children
• Stokes Partnership for Children
• Surry County Early Childhood Partnership
• The Halifax – Warren Smart Start Partnership for Children, Inc.
• Wake County SmartStart
• Wilkes Community Partnership for Children