Section 2-90 of the Connecticut General Statutes authorizes the State Auditors to examine the books and records of state departments, commissions and boards as well as certain quasi-public agencies. Subsection (c) provides that each such audit may include an examination of performance in order to determine effectiveness in achieving expressed legislative purposes.
According to Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards (GAGAS) published by the GAO, a performance audit is an audit that provides findings or conclusions based on an evaluation of sufficient, appropriate evidence against criteria. Performance audits provide objective analysis to assist management and those charged with governance and oversight in using information to improve program performance and operations, reduce costs, facilitate decision making by parties with responsibility to oversee or initiate corrective action, and contribute to public accountability. The term program is used in GAGAS to include government entities, organizations, programs, activities, and functions. Current GAO performance audit standards are included in Chapters 6 and 7 of the Yellow Book, 2011 Revision. These chapters cover Field Work Standards and Reporting Standards, respectively. Naturally, the General Standards of Chapter 3 of the Yellow Book apply as well.
This performance audit work may be done either as a part of a 2-90 Audit or as a separate performance audit depending on the scope of the review to be undertaken.