Assigned to ED                                                                                                                       FOR COMMITTEE






Fifty-Fifth Legislature, Second Regular Session




schools; accounting responsibility plans; counties


Directs a school district applying to the State Board of Education (SBE) to assume accounting responsibility of the district to first apply for a county treasurer evaluation and requires the school district to file the accounting responsibility plan with the county school superintendent.


The office of county superintendent is designated as a local education agency serving as an education service agency eligible to receive and spend local, state and federal monies to provide programs and services to school districts and other educational entities within the county. The county school superintendent must apportion school monies to the school districts of the county (A.R.S. §§ 15-301 and 15-303).

A school district may apply to the SBE to assume accounting responsibility by filing with the Arizona Department of Education an accounting responsibility plan that documents:
1) specified administrative and internal accounting controls to achieve compliance with the Uniform System of Financial Records; and 2) a compilation of resources required to implement accounting responsibility. Before submitting the application, the school district must apply for an evaluation by the Auditor General that includes the school district's most recent audited financial statements, reports on internal control and compliance and Uniform System of Financial Records compliance questionnaire. On notification of a school district's intent to assume accounting responsibility, the county treasurer must establish acceptable standards for interface by school districts with the county treasurer, including specifications for computer hardware compatibility and procedures to ensure the capacity of each school district to reconcile accounts with the county treasurer's accounts.

Accounting responsibility is the authority for a school district to operate with full independence from the county school superintendent with respect to revenues and expenditures, including allocating revenues, monitoring vouchers, authorizing warrants and maintaining and verifying staff records for certification and payroll purposes (A.R.S. § 15-914.01).

There is no anticipated fiscal impact to the state General Fund associated with this legislation.


1.   Directs a school district, before January 1 of the fiscal year preceding the fiscal year of implementation and before submitting an application to assume accounting responsibility, to apply for evaluation by the county treasurer of the county in which the school district is located.

2.   Authorizes the county treasurer, on completion of the evaluation, to recommend to the SBE the approval or denial of accounting responsibility.

3.   Requires the county treasurer evaluation to include, at a minimum, an analysis of the computer programming required for the county to manage school district funds.

4.   Directs a county treasurer to perform the evaluation contingent on staff availability and allows the county treasurer to bill the evaluation to the school district at cost.

5.   Replaces the requirement that a school district notify the county school superintendent of its intention to assume accounting responsibility with a requirement to file an accounting responsibility plan with the county school superintendent.

6.   Removes the requirement that a school district notify the county treasurer of its intent to assume accounting responsibility.

7.   Requires the county treasurer, on receipt of an accounting responsibility plan, rather than on notification, to establish acceptable standards for interface by school districts with the county treasurer as prescribed.

8.   Makes technical and conforming changes.

9.   Becomes effective on the general effective date.

House Action

ED                   2/15/22      DPA       9-0-0-1

3rd Read          2/23/22                     59-0-1

Prepared by Senate Research

March 11, 2022