Highway Trust Fund Excise Taxes
AIMD-99-71R: Published: Feb 25, 1999. Publicly Released: Feb 25, 1999.
Pursuant to a legislative requirement, GAO reviewed whether the net excise tax revenue distributed to the Highway Trust Fund (HTF) for the fiscal year (FY) ended September 30, 1998, is supported by the underlying records.
GAO noted that: (1) this engagement to apply agreed-upon procedures was performed in accordance with standards established by the American Institute of Certified public Accountants (AICPA); (2) the procedures GAO agreed to perform include: (a) detailed tests of transactions that represent the underlying basis of amounts distributed to HTF; (b) review of Internal Revenue Service's (IRS) quarterly HTF certifications; (c) review of the Department of the Treasury Financial Management Service adjustments to HTF for FY 1998; (d) review of the Office of the Tax Analysis process for estimating amounts to be distributed to HTF for the fourth quarter of FY 1998; (e) comparison of net excise tax distributions to HTF during FY 1998 and amounts reported in the financial statements prepared by the Bureau of Public Debt for HTF and the Trust Fund's own financial statements; and (f) review of key reconciliations of IRS records to Treasury records; (3) GAO was not engaged to, and did not, perform an audit, the objective of which would be the expression of an opinion on the net excise taxes distributed to HTF; (4) accordingly, GAO does not express such an opinion; (5) GAO completed the agreed-upon procedures on February 12, 1999; (6) in performing the agreed-upon procedures, GAO conducted its work in accordance with generally accepted government auditing standards, which incorporate financial audit and attestation standards established by AICPA; and (7) these standards also provide guidance when performing and reporting the results of agreed-upon procedures.