NASA Receives Clean Audit Opinion
NASA has released its Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 Performance and Accountability Report (PAR), which provides a summary of the agency’s annual performance and financial information. This year’s report marks an important financial milestone for the agency — a “clean” audit opinion.
This is NASA’s first clean financial statement audit opinion in nine years.
“NASA’s budget of $18.4 billion covers many complex programs to improve national capabilities in space flight, science and aeronautics,” said NASA Chief Financial Officer Beth Robinson. “The agency has worked hard over the past nine years to ensure that we know where we stand with each program and have a firm footing as an agency to pursue our future goals. This outside validation of our efforts gives the taxpayers and the Congress confidence that we will continue to keep America the leader in space exploration as we responsibly manage their investment.”
The auditor’s opinion of an unqualified financial statement in Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 asserts the agency’s financial statements accurately represent its financial position and operations. An unqualified opinion is the highest rating that may be received from an external auditor. The independent assessment of the agency’s financial stewardship of taxpayer resources demonstrates the agency’s strong financial foundation as it continues to launch cutting-edge science and technology missions and prepares to embark on a new chapter of exploration.
The PAR, which is required by Congress, helps measure the agency’s progress and performance in meeting its strategic goals. FY 2011 was a year of remarkable change for NASA programs and activities. As the agency retired the Space Shuttle Program after 30 years of flight, it took critical first steps on a new path that will include commercial capability for reaching low Earth orbit and crewed missions to deep space.
Overall, NASA accomplished 88 percent of its performance measures, a strong number given the risks and uncertainties associated with spaceflight activities. While NASA lost the Glory spacecraft due to a launch vehicle failure and experienced delays in some missions, the agency also safely flew the final two flights of the space shuttle, completed on-orbit construction of the U.S. elements of the International Space Station, facilitated the first commercial cargo demonstration mission, and launched the Aquarius, Juno and GRAIL science missions. The year also saw a start up of a new space technology program, which initiated many innovative technology developments, and continued success in aeronautics research and development toward the air transportation system of the future.
NASA recently unveiled a new strategic plan and vision with long-term goals to guide the agency’s activities and priorities over the next decade while continuing its commitment to core values of safety, integrity, teamwork, and excellence. The FY 2011 PAR highlights this new strategic plan and provides important information on progress and results.
For more information and to view the PAR report, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/news/budget/index.html