Fast Facts

The Senate Commission on Art acquires works of art, historical objects, documents, and exhibits for the Capitol and Senate office buildings—financing them through the Senate Preservation Fund. The Library of Congress provides financial management and support to the Commission.

We audit the Senate Preservation Fund's transactions every three years. For FY 2018-2020, the Fund's transactions consisted solely of investments. We found that the Commission and the Library executed all transactions in accordance with the adequately designed policies and procedures.

We also found the transactions to be in compliance with applicable laws.

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Highlights

What GAO Found

GAO found that the policies and procedures for the Senate Commission on Art's operations and oversight and the Library of Congress's operations and reporting were sufficiently documented, adequately designed, and consistent with applicable federal internal control standards to reasonably assure that the Senate Preservation Fund's receipts, disbursements, and investments would be authorized in advance, promptly and accurately accounted for, and supported. For fiscal years 2018, 2019, and 2020, the Fund's recorded transactions consisted of 42 investment-related transactions. There were no operating-related receipt or disbursement transactions during this period.

GAO found that all transactions were executed in accordance with the Commission's and the Library's policies and procedures and that all transactions were in compliance with applicable laws that GAO deemed significant to the audit objectives. In addition, the Commission and the Library generally followed their respective oversight and reporting policies and procedures over the activity that occurred during the period.

GAO provided a draft of this report to the Chief Financial Officer of the Library of Congress and the Secretary of the Senate for review and comment. They responded that they had no comments on GAO's report.

Why GAO Did This Study

In September 2003, Congress established the Fund within the U.S. Treasury. The Fund is available to the Commission to fund the acquisition of works of art, historical objects, documents, and materials relating to historical matters, or exhibits in the Capitol and Senate office buildings, and certain related activities. The Library is to provide the Commission with financial-management and disbursing services and support. The law requires GAO to audit the Fund and report the results to the Commission.

GAO's objectives were to determine to what extent (1) the Commission's and the Library's policies and procedures were documented and designed to reasonably assure that the Fund's recorded transactions would be authorized in advance, promptly and accurately accounted for, and supported and (2) the Commission and the Library executed Fund transactions for fiscal years 2018, 2019, and 2020 in accordance with policies and procedures, as well as with applicable laws.

For more information, contact Beryl H. Davis at (202) 512-2623 or davisbh@gao.gov.

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