Interior Should Solve Its Royalty Accounting Problems Before Implementing New Accounting System

AFMD-83-43: Published: Jan 27, 1983. Publicly Released: Jan 27, 1983.

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GAO reviewed the Department of the Interior's effort to design and develop a new royalty accounting system. The Minerals Management Service (MMS) is responsible for designing, developing, and implementing the royalty accounting system.

GAO found that Interior is attempting to correct longstanding financial management problems and has emphasized the need for an effective royalty managment program. Although GAO is encouraged by Interior's ongoing efforts, GAO is concerned that certain problems will not be resolved before the implementation date. However, if aggressively pursued, actions underway or planned will to a great extent resolve many of the problems. In the past, limited staff and the constant push to meet deadlines have prevented MMS from undertaking many actions which it recognized were needed. While none of these concerns would cause the system to fail, GAO believes that they are serious enough to recommend that Interior delay implementation of the auditing and financial system until the problems GAO identified and any others arising from the acceptance test have been resolved.

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