Even though the Pentagon failed its most recent audit, the process itself is helping DOD get its fiscal house in order, Deputy Defense Secretary David Norquist told lawmakers Wednesday. The audit results were announced last week, as On Base reported.
As comptroller, Norquist also oversaw the Pentagon’s first audit in 2018, which also failed to produce a clean report. He testified that previous comptrollers had delayed the audit process because they knew it would fail, which he called a “major mistake,” according to Defense News.
“The challenge on the audit was an emphasis to get ready for it, and there’s where I brought a fundamentally different view than those who came before me,” Norquist said.
He described a department-wide process that helped service members see beyond the paperwork to understand the effect proper accounting has on readiness, including more accurate weapons inventories.
Members of the Senate Armed Services readiness subcommittee praised the progress.
“Thanks for doing the hard job, getting it done and not delaying it further,” Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) told him, Defense News reported.
DOD photo of Defense Secretary Mark Esper, left, and Deputy Secretary David Norquist by Lisa Ferdinando