Report 2012-112 Recommendations and Responses in 2014-041

Report 2012-112: Office of the Secretary of State: It Must Do More to Ensure Funds Provided Under the Federal Help America Vote Act Are Spent Effectively

Department Number of Years Reported As Not Fully Implemented Total Recommendations to Department Not Implemented After One Year Not Implemented as of 2013-041 Response Not Implemented as of Most Recent Response
Office of the Secretary of State 1 5 2 n/a 2

Recommendation To: Secretary of State, Office of the

To enhance the value of the HAVA spending plan as a transparency and accountability tool for the Legislature, the Office should make the following modifications to its annual HAVA spending plan:

Clearly state the methodology used to report prior HAVA expenditures in the HAVA spending plan. Such a methodology should use the financial information contained in its accounting system.

Reconcile the prior HAVA expenditures with the year-end financial reports the Office provides to the California State Controller's Office.

Present prior HAVA expenditures by activity and by specific appropriation.

Response

The current HAVA Spending Plan was developed with the Department of Finance (DOF) and the Legislative Analyst's Office (LAO) several years ago. The SOS was in contact with DOF regarding specific areas where additional financial information might aid in understanding how HAVA funds are expended or administered. The DOF indicated its preference for receiving the HAVA Spending Plan and supporting documentation in the format that was originally agreed to by the Legislature, the LAO, and the DOF. Through the budget and reporting process, the SOS worked closely with the Legislature and the DOF, but no additional information was requested and all parties indicated their continued preference for the Spending Plan in its current format.

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Will Not Implement
  • Completion Date:
  • Response Date: August 2014

Recommendation To: Secretary of State, Office of the

To ensure the State complies with the NVRA, the Office should take all necessary steps, including seeking any necessary legislative changes, and work with the DMV to modify the driver's license application so that it may simultaneously serve as a form for voter registration.

Response

While the status reflected above is "Will Not Implement," the SOS views this as a recommendation that it is unable to implement. The SOS continues to work closely with state and local NVRA agencies to ensure the State complies with the NVRA. A copy of the SOS' NVRA Accomplishments & Next Steps document detailing those efforts was provided as part of the SOS' six month response. However, the DMV is not a department under the purview or control of the SOS. That is why the United States District court for the Northern District of California, in its 1995 order in Wilson v. United States, approved procedures allowing the DMV to incorporate a voter registration form with the driver license application, known as the DL 44, making the DL 44 a two-page form. The SOS has worked closely with the DMV to: (1) simplify and shorten the voter registration portion of the DL 44; (2) ensure seamless electronic transfer of all change of address data; and (3) speed the forwarding of completed voter registration forms from the DMV to county elections offices. The SOS will continue to work closely with the DMV and make recommendations to further improve that department's implementation of the NVRA.

  • California State Auditor's Assessment of Status: Will Not Implement
  • Response Date: August 2014

Current Status of Recommendations

All Recommendations in 2014-041