Indiana University SPEA Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy University of Pennsylvania AIR American University

Panel Paper: Analyzing County Government Contracting Processes and Internal Controls to Address Procurement Fraud Schemes

Friday, November 13, 2015 : 2:10 PM
Pearson I (Hyatt Regency Miami)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Robert J. Eger, Naval Postgraduate School and Christy Smith, University of New Haven
Contracting plays an important role in the local governments as a means to acquire a wide array of systems, supplies, and services. Contract spending imposes an opportunity for fraud or process subversion that may cause waste and impede service accomplishment.

The purpose of this research was to analyze county-level contracting out according to the six commonly recognized phases of contract management (procurement planning, solicitation planning, solicitation, source selection, contract administration, and contract closeout), five internal control components (control environment, risk assessment, control activates, information and communications, and monitoring) and six broad categories of procurement fraud (collusion, conflict of interest, bid rigging, billing/cost/pricing schemes, fraudulent purchases, and fraudulent representation). This was done through the deployment of content analysis for a random sample of county governments for the time period 2011-2014.

The results will allow county governments to assess fraud awareness and perception among the different contracting phases, internal control components, and procurement fraud scheme categories. Recommendations for improving fraud awareness are presented to enhance managerial knowledge and introduce potential factors to reduce fraud in county contracting.