Report 2012-119 Recommendation 17 Responses

Report 2012-119: California Department of Veterans Affairs: It Has Initiated Plans to Serve Veterans Better and More Cost-Efficiently, but Further Improvements Are Needed (Release Date: May 2013)

Recommendation #17 To: Veterans Affairs, Department of

To more effectively and efficiently meet state purchasing and procurement requirements, CalVet should continue implementing quality assurance policies to strengthen its oversight of its purchasing practices, including conducting on-site reviews of the purchasing practices of the veterans homes.

Agency Response*

Over the past 12-month period, the CalVet Office of Procurements and Contracts has accomplished the following to address the ongoing improvement of quality assurance:

- Provided ongoing training at each of the Veterans Homes to include contract management training and procurement activities;

- Revised the service order (SO) policy for the Department, and relocated the process to Headquarters to ensure the proper use of the service order procedures in procurement activities. Also provided DVBE/Small Business training to each of the Veterans Homes;

- Participated in the state's Fi$Cal implementation process to ensure accurate accounts of procurement activities when the Fi$Cal operation begins 7/01/2018;

- Initiated a bulletin to provide key information on P-Card use to all Veterans Home staff.

Over the next 12-month period, the Office of Procurements and Contracts will implement or initiate the following:

- Update of current procurement policies and procedures;

- Training for the eight Veterans Homes on service order updates and policy and procedure changes;

- Monthly meetings with all P-card users to discuss ongoing issues and/or changes.

  • Response Type†: Annual Follow Up
  • Estimated Completion Date: December 31, 2017
  • Response Date: November 2017

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Pending


Agency Response*

Over the past 12-month period, CalVet has internally audited the state Veterans Homes for compliance with Department of General Services (DGS) and State Administrative Manual purchasing requirements. Additionally, the Department's policies and procedures have been rewritten to be more in compliance with the state's expectations. The results of those audit findings were addressed at the Contracts and Procurement Training Workshop for the entire Department, which was held on August 23-25, 2016.

  • Response Type†: Annual Follow Up
  • Estimated Completion Date: 12/31/2017
  • Response Date: October 2016

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Not Fully Implemented


Agency Response*

CalVet's non-IT Contracts and Procurement staff have been under new leadership since May 2015. With this new leadership, the Department is undergoing extensive revision of its procurement policies and procedures and generating updates and revisions as needed. CalVet will complete a revised procedure manual by December 31, 2015. Additionally, the CalVet Office of Procurement and Contracts is conducting an internal review and assessment of Purchase Orders, Service Orders and contract management practices. These reviews began in the Veterans Homes in September 2015 and will continue through mid-November 2015. They include all eight Veterans Homes.

  • Response Type†: Annual Follow Up
  • Estimated Completion Date: December 2016
  • Response Date: October 2015

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Not Fully Implemented


Agency Response*

CalVet recently conducted four training sessions in person and by video teleconference for staff in headquarters and the Veterans Homes on contracting procedures. CalVet will be providing training on the procurement process the first week of November 2014. In addition, the third Wednesday of each month CalVet has an ongoing training session on contracting issues. CalVet updated its procurement procedures and is in the process of finalizing and revamping its contracting procedures. In addition, headquarters staff is also conducting quarterly visits to the Veterans Homes to provide training and to pull sample contracts and purchase orders for auditing. CalVet is also relooking the purchasing model for the Department. CalVet expects to complete this evaluation by December 2014.

  • Response Type†: Annual Follow Up
  • Estimated Completion Date: December 2016
  • Response Date: October 2014

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Not Fully Implemented


Agency Response*

Continued ongoing implementation of quality assurance policies for our Purchasing and Contracting section and those within our Veterans Homes is part of CalVet's leadership intent. As a part of this process, CalVet recently, March 2014, filled a vacant manager position that oversees Procurement and Contracting. CalVet is actively working to update our current Purchasing & Contracting Procedures Manual. The Department of General Services Procurement Division directed CalVet to update our Purchasing & Contracting procedures in order to retain our Purchasing Approval Authority. As a part of this update, CalVet instituted a bi-annual training of the Purchasing & Contracting personnel throughout CalVet. Headquarters staff will visit each home to provide training and pull samples contracts to audit. We will also conduct sample audits of Purchase Orders during veterans home visits. We are also relooking the purchasing model for the Department. CalVet expects that we will complete this evaluation by December 2014.

  • Response Type†: 1-Year
  • Estimated Completion Date: Dec 2016
  • Response Date: May 2014

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Partially Implemented


Agency Response*

Headquarters staff will provide more oversight and guidance (twice a year) to ensure that its Veterans Homes comply with state purchasing and procurement requirements.

  • Response Type†: 6-Month
  • Estimated Completion Date: February 2014
  • Response Date: November 2013

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Pending


Agency Response*

As part of its continuing efforts to improve that process, CalVet has already implemented a checklist and expects to complete the initial on-site reviews of each of the Veterans homes by June 2013. Joy Hempstead visited each home and conducted a review of the purchasing practices. As a result additional training is being developed for the homes. Provided each purchasing staff a copy of the delegated purchasing acknowledgement form which was signed.

  • Response Type†: 60-Day
  • Completion Date: June 2013
  • Response Date: July 2013

California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Partially Implemented

CalVet has taken steps to implement this recommendation, but will need to provide additional training to its staff to help ensure they will follow appropriate purchasing practices in the future.


All Recommendations in 2012-119

†Response Type refers to the interval in which the auditee is providing the State Auditor with their status in implementing recommendations made in an audit report. Auditees must submit a response regarding their progress in implementing recommendations from our reports at three intervals from the release of the report: 60 days, six months, and one year or subsequent to one year.

*Agency responses received after June 2013 are posted verbatim.


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