During an oversight hearing today focused on the Department of Defense’s ongoing audit and business operations reform at the Pentagon, U.S. Senator Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., Chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, said that rebuilding the military and reforming the way the Pentagon does business must go hand in hand.
“Our nation faces grave threats abroad and a challenging fiscal situation at home. Given these dual pressures, it is crucial to rebuild the military and reform the way the Pentagon does business,” Enzi said. “A successful Pentagon audit will require sustained congressional oversight and a renewed commitment to accountability at the department. The goal must be improved financial management and business operations. The audit will empower managers to make better decisions with more accurate financial reporting systems and data. For our troops, better decision-making will mean more money for critical equipment and training.”
Enzi noted that the Defense Department audit is expected to cost almost $1 billion this fiscal year alone, which is why he believes Congress must have a full breakdown of projected audit costs. He also said the department should provide an explanation of how it is ensuring the independence of its contracted auditors, and how the department plans to remedy any problems they find.
“Gaining insight into which problems the Pentagon is fixing and why it will motivate Congress to continue supporting the audit,” Enzi said. “Managing the Pentagon is a difficult task. But it is crucial to our nation’s defense and to ensuring that we spend Americans’ tax dollars wisely.”