This charter sets forth the guiding principles and operating parameters of the Pacific Northwest Intergovernmental Audit Forum (Forum or PNIAF), which was originally established October 15, 1974.
The Pacific Northwest Intergovernmental Audit Forum (PNIAF), a consortium of audit executives and staff from federal, state, and local governments, certified public accounting firms, and others interested in governmental audits, is hereby created. It will represent the area embraced by the states of Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington.
The PNIAF is a nonprofit association with a primary purpose of improving communication, coordination, and cooperation within the federal, state, and local intergovernmental auditing community and advancing effective auditing practices. The Forum holds conferences periodically, but at least annually to discuss emerging issues affecting auditors and financial managers; to identify, discuss, and where possible, resolve interagency and intergovernmental issues relating to audits; and to share ideas, information, and experiences on how to improve the usefulness and effectiveness of audits at all levels of government. All persons involved or interested in audits or evaluations of governmental activities are welcome to register for and attend PNIAF’s conferences, network with their peers from other audit organizations, and earn Continuing Professional Education (CPE) credits.
The primary goals of the Forum are to improve communication, coordination, and cooperation in intergovernmental auditing of all members. The Forum will consider audit issues applicable to any governmental unit. The Forum will serve as a means of bringing together persons who can work toward solutions through discussions of the issues. It is expected that the activities of the Forum will be of benefit to federal agencies, states, local governments, and others. The Forum meeting will provide an opportunity for professional development. The Forum will have no authority to bind its participants; however, all participants will actively support the primary purpose.
The Forum shall be constituted as a body within which the participants will, collectively or through committees, further the Forum’s key functions, which shall include, without limitation:
- Develop mechanisms and administrative procedures to facilitate day-to-day audit cooperation between participants and exchange of information on matters relating to audits;
- Identify specific issues that are characterized by a high degree of interagency and intergovernmental involvement, the resolution of which will contribute significantly to the efficiency and usefulness of audits at all levels of government;
- Develop projects for resolution of the specific issues;
- Review and evaluate periodically the progress made on projects;
- Facilitate the discussion and resolution of interagency and intergovernmental issues relating to audits;
- Develop interagency and intergovernmental strategies for resource allocations to fill voids and minimize overlaps and duplications in audit coverage;
- Invite groups, such as government associations and professional societies, to contribute on topics of interest to the Forum; and
- Promote the acceptance, use, and uniform interpretation of generally accepted auditing standards, including the Government Auditing Standards issued by the Comptroller General and other comprehensive professional auditing standards.
Any individual may be a member of the Forum if they are a practitioner in a governmental auditing organization or in a private firm that engages in OMB Circular A-133 audits or other engagements conducted in accordance with Government Auditing Standards issued by the Comptroller General of the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO).
Members have full voting rights and have a commitment to attend regular Forum meetings.
A principal is a Forum member that
- is the head of a government organization whose role includes the conduct of audits of governmental organizations, programs, activities or functions, regardless of level or branch of government;
- for federal agencies, is the head of the organizational unit or his or her designee which serves the area covered by this forum; or
- is the head, partner or designee in a private firm that engages in OMB Circular A-133 audits or other engagements conducted in accordance with Government Auditing Standards issued by the Comptroller General of the U.S. Government Accountability Office.
A principal shall appoint a designee who shall serve whenever the principal is unable to vote or otherwise act on Forum matters. The designee shall be fully empowered to act on behalf of and instead of the organization’s principal in all Forum affairs, including serving as a member on the Executive Committee.
Admission to Forum Membership
Individuals interested in Forum membership shall submit an on-line membership form. The roster of Forum Principals and Members will be maintained by a person designated to perform administrative management duties (Executive Director/Audit Forum Coordinator) in support of Forum activities. This person shall be an ex-officio member of the Forum and all committees.
The Executive Committee members may review applications to ensure individuals have properly designated themselves as either Principals or Members.
Periodically, the Executive Committee may review the membership list to ensure that it includes only active members. The Executive Committee may take action to update the membership list.
The Forum encourages participation by persons interested in the conduct of governmental audits, but having no direct audit responsibility. Observers have no voting rights; however, such persons may actively participate in all Forum activities, including meetings, discussions, and committees and may receive all Forum mailings.
The role of the Executive Committee is to organize and support the activities of the Forum. This includes, without limitation,:
- Planning and approving the agenda for Forum meetings;
- Identifying business matters that require approval by vote of the Forum members;
- Providing leadership and advice on current issues of interest to the Forum; and
- Determining which state and local representative on the Executive Committee will represent the PNIAF at the National Intergovernmental Audit Forum.
The Executive Committee shall be comprised of 10 principals, or their designees, who are Forum members. The terms of office for the Executive Committee members shall be 6 years with staggered end dates.
There shall be no more than 3 Executive Committee members who are from federal government organizations, of which one member shall be from the GAO and appointed by the GAO.
There shall be no more than 3 Executive Committee members who are from state government organizations.
There shall be no more than 3 Executive Committee members who are from local government organizations.
There shall be no more than 1 Executive Committee member who is from a private certified public accounting firm.
Of the 10 Executive Committee members, there shall be no more than 1 member from the same organization.
If a vacancy occurs on the Executive Committee, it will be temporarily filled by a principal or his or her designee appointed by the Executive Committee. This temporary appointment will last only until the next regularly scheduled vote for Executive Committee members.
Meetings of the Executive Committee shall be held at the discretion of the Chairperson or when petitioned by three members of the Executive Committee. A quorum shall be half of the total members of the Executive Committee. When a vote is necessary, a majority of the members attending the meeting is required to pass a motion.
The Executive Committee shall designate one state and one local Executive Committee member to represent the PNIAF at the National Intergovernmental Audit Forum.
Executive Committee Officers
The Executive Committee will elect a Chair and a Vice Chair and those individuals along with the immediate past Chair will serve terms in those positions for two years. The Vice Chair shall serve as the Chair-elect and will assume the position of the Chair at the expiration of the term. If the Chair is unable to fulfill the responsibilities of the Chair, the Vice Chair shall assume the responsibilities of the Chair for the remaining term. If the Vice Chair is unable to carry out the responsibilities of the Vice Chair or if the Vice Chair has assumed the responsibilities of the Chair, then the Executive Committee will elect a new Vice Chair.
Election of the Executive Committee
Prior to the first Forum meeting in each even-numbered year, the Executive Committee will announce that they are accepting nominations for membership on the Executive Committee. The nominations will be announced at the end of the meeting, and the vote will occur electronically after the meeting in which the nominations are announced.
The Chair shall be the principal executive officer of the Forum and shall preside over all meetings. In the absence of the Chair, the Vice Chair shall perform the duties of the Chair.
The Executive Director/Audit Forum coordinator shall be an ex-officio member of the Forum, and all committees and shall perform administrative management duties in support of Forum activities.
Regular Forum meetings shall be held periodically, but at least once a year at such time and place as shall be designated by the Chair. The meetings shall alternate among Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington.
Extraordinary meetings of the Forum may be called at the direction of the Chair to consider important matters affecting a significant segment of members. When an official Forum position is required between regular meetings, and an extraordinary meeting is deemed impractical by the Executive Committee, electronic voting may be used. The Chair will be responsible for providing appropriate notification to the membership and observers for any meeting or electronic balloting.
The Chair may obtain the views of members, using questionnaires, surveys, or other communication means. Members may bring matters to the attention of the Forum, or comment on Forum issues, by contacting the Forum coordinator at the following web address:
All members shall have the right to vote on matters brought to the Forum by the Executive Committee. Voting may be conducted during Forum meetings or by mail, telephone, e-mail, or other method as designated by the Executive Committee.
When voting by members on general matters, the matter shall be approved by a majority of those voting; except that in each instance when all federal government members or all state government members or all local government members vote against any matter, that matter shall not be approved.
When voting for Executive Committee representatives, members will vote only for those nominees representing their respective level of government. For example, federal employee members will vote for nominees to the federal representative seats, state employee members will vote for nominees to fill the state representative seats, and local employee members will vote for nominees to fill the local representative seats.
New Executive Committee members will start 30 days after the election results are announced.
For purposes of amending this charter, a majority vote of Principals voting is required.
In all cases, before a vote is taken, all members may participate in the discussion of the matter at hand.
The Forum will carry out its various functions through an Executive Committee and supplemented by ad hoc committees organized for special purposes as appropriate.
Relationship With National Intergovernmental Audit Forum
A National Intergovernmental Audit Forum (NIAF) has been created for the purpose of bringing together federal, state, and local auditors at the directorate level to discuss and resolve intergovernmental audit issues. The Pacific Northwest Intergovernmental Audit Forum, with reference to the National Forum:
- Provides federal, state, and local representatives to the NIAF;
- Provides copies of meeting agendas and minutes;
- Recommends courses of action as a result of National Intergovernmental Audit Forum activity; and
- Refers issues that the Pacific Northwest Intergovernmental Audit Forum believes should be considered on a national scale.
CHARTER REPLACEMENT and FORUM DISSOLUTION
Termination and Replacement of Former Charter
Adoption of this charter will require voting by Principals; passage will be based on a majority of those voting. Upon a final affirmative vote to adopt this charter, the Former Charter will be immediately terminated and simultaneously replaced by this charter. Any identified members under the Former Charter will be carried forward as members under this new charter. The existing Executive Committee members will carry out their full terms. In addition, all money and other assets of the Forum existing at the time of dissolution shall be transferred to the new Forum when established.
Dissolution of Forum
The Forum may be dissolved by a majority of the members voting. In case of dissolution of the Forum and liquidation of its affairs, any money and other assets remaining after the payment of all obligations shall be distributed and designated at the discretion of the Executive Committee.
The charter was adopted by the Members of the Pacific Northwest Intergovernmental Audit Forum on May 15, 2012.