COUNTY OF SANTA CRUZ
Under general supervision, performs professional financial, accounting and
auditing duties for county-wide programs and activities in the
Auditor-Controllers Office; performs related duties as required.
The class of Senior and Principal Accountant-Auditor series is found only in
the Auditor-Controllers Office. Incumbents in this class may be rotated among a
variety of accounting and auditing assignments and may be assigned accounting
duties in the General Accounting or Budget and Tax Divisions of the
Auditor-Controllers Office, or auditing and/or system duties in the Audit and
Systems Division. This Accountant-Auditor series is distinguished from other
Accountant and Auditor classifications in that the duties of this series is
broader in scope and complexity, encompasses county-wide responsibilities for
financial activities as opposed to departmental activities; in addition, the
incumbents are required to assist and review departmental accounting and
Senior Accountant-Auditor is the full journey level in this series.
Under general supervision, incumbents perform the full range of auditing and
accounting assignments, including management studies, performance audits, as
well as financial and compliance audits, financial reporting, cost accounting,
complex reconciliations and other accounting assignments. Work is performed
independently, applying generally accepted accounting principles and auditing
standards; however, assistance on difficult technical matters is available. Work
may be checked occasionally during progress for appropriateness and adherence to
time requirements, but routine analyses and applied methods, techniques, and
procedures are expected to be correct. Incumbents may review the work of others
for quality and completeness and may work as a team leader on assignments of
The Principal Accountant-Auditor is distinguished from Senior
Accountant-Auditor in that in addition to the duties performed by the Senior
Accountant-Auditor, incumbents in this class must independently plan and conduct
the most complex and sensitive audits and accounting projects characterized by
multiple funding sources, more sophisticated computer systems, and complex
accounting requirements which require technical interpretation of policies,
regulations and contracts, a well as management and performance audits of large
scope and/or policy impact.
Incumbents also provide training and guidance to staff and audit clients.
- Reviews and recommends to management for approval various Federal/State
grant claims, SB 90 Claims, and other cost and financial reports submitted
by other departments.
- Participates in the preparation of complex financial reports, such as the
Cost Allocation Plan, Property Tax Administration Fee, Daily Jail Rate, and
- Develops revenue and expenditure projections for other departments and
outside agencies for budgetary and/or financial data analysis, which have
major county-wide impact.
- Assists in the development and formulation of county-wide fiscal policies,
procedures, and guidelines with regards to cost reporting and Grants
accounting in conformity with established standards, laws, rules, and
- Distributes county-wide property taxes, special assessments, bond
payments; apportions the interest earnings from the Treasurers investments
to various funds and agencies.
- Analyzes a variety of periodic complex reports and/or fiscal problems
involving cost accounting, statistics, and legal research.
- Provides direct technical support to other departments on matters relating
to budgets, analysis of statistical and financial data, and other special
projects; interviews staff at all levels to gather information for use in
specialized accounting projects.
- Plans/recommends procedures for the compilation and calculation of
building and equipment usage, allocation of costs based on workflow and
staffing patterns, space utilization for various functions.
- Performs analytical review of costs and fiscal data; learns to prepare
complex and difficult adjusting entries and transfers appropriations.
- Provides technical accounting training to all County fiscal staff;
analyzes administrative, accounting and internal control weaknesses, and
provides training as deemed necessary; develops and maintains training
manuals; conducts surveys and gathers data to determine training needs;
develops and maintains County-wide accounting manual; monitors all changes
in governmental accounting principles.
- May supervise or review the work of others in making entries,
reconciliations or performing other fiscal functions.
- Develops and analyzes Countywide cash flows and bond payments for required
annual borrowing and debt services, works with the Countys financial
advisor, rating agencies, trustees and others. Develops annual debt service
forecast for CAO-recommended budget.
- Meets with County management and audit manager to develop/ identify the
audit scope and objectives; interviews staff at all levels to gather
preliminary information for use in planning the audit.
- Documents understanding of the internal control structure and its
components, and assesses risks.
- Develops and performs tests of the internal controls and identifies
opportunities to improve internal controls.
- Develops and performs audit tests and procedures which include but are not
limited to analysis and/or reconciliation of financial transactions and
balances for accuracy, completeness and validity; observation of controls
and/or processes, confirmation with outside organizations.
- Documents and independently and objectively evaluates the audit evidence
and the results of audit tests to draw a conclusion regarding the objectives
of the audit; identifies the possible cause and any contributing factors of
any conditions that negatively impact the Countys ability to meet its
- Develops feasible and cost-effective recommendations concerning identified
weaknesses or conditions
- Prepares and presents written reports to County management and outside
agencies based on the independent assessment of documented audit evidence.
- Prepares financial statements in accordance with generally accepted
- Reviews and makes recommendations to improve the effectiveness and
efficiency of accounting systems and departmental processes and procedures;
reviews the corrective action/ determines status of audit findings.
- May supervise or review the work of others.
Senior Accountant-Auditor: Working knowledge of all the knowledge
required for the Associate Accountant-Auditor, Auditor III and IV, Accountant
III or equivalent accounting or auditing position in addition to those of
Accountant-Auditor, plus one years experience.
Principal Accountant-Auditor: Working knowledge of all the knowledge
required for the Senior Accountant-Auditor, plus one years experience.
- Ability to interpret and apply legal and procedural requirements;
interpret and apply professional accounting and auditing principles and
- Analyze fiscal data and operating procedures of routine complexity and
make projections and recommendations;
- Perform mathematical calculations; understand electronic and manual
accounting systems; document processes and prepare flow charts;
- Explain County financial processes and systems to others; train others in
generally accepted governmental accounting principles and standards,
procedures, rules and regulations; apply accounting and/or auditing
principles and practices of government accounting;
- Apply principles of management theory; prepare financial reports, or
sections thereof; understand and analyze expenditure reports;
- Gather information/data; prepare concise and logical working papers in
accordance with office standards; exercise good judgment;
- Effectively use personal computer in carrying out assignments;
- Prioritize work assignments; identify problems, determine potential impact
and identify possible causes;
- Communicate effectively both verbally and in writing;
- Understand program objectives in relation to departmental goals and
- Establish and maintain working relationships with vendors, County staff,
management, state employees, and the general public;
- Maintain impartiality and objectivity;
- Maintain confidentiality of information;
- Understand and apply principles of supervision, including selection,
training, evaluation, and discipline.
Education and Experience
Any combination of education and experience which would provide the required
knowledge and abilities is qualifying, unless otherwise specified. A typical way
to obtain the knowledge and abilities would be:
Senior Accountant-Auditor: Bachelors degree from an accredited college
or university with a degree in either Business Administration, Finance,
Financial Management, Auditing, Accounting or related field and three years of
professional experience with increasing responsibility performing accounting and
auditing functions. Course work must include at least 18/24 semester and/or
quarter units in upper division courses in accounting, auditing or finance.
Principal Accountant-Auditor: Bachelors degree from an accredited
college or university with a degree in either Business Administration, Finance,
Financial Management, Auditing, Accounting or related field and one year of
professional experience performing Senior Accountant-Auditor or equivalent
accounting and auditing functions. Course work must include at least 18/24
semester and/or quarter units in upper division courses in accounting, auditing
- Possess and maintain a valid Class C California Drivers License during the
course of employment or provide a transportation alternative that is
acceptable to the Auditor/Controller.
- Positions in this class require a 12-month probationary period.
- Certification: Any of the following certifications, Certified Public
Accountant, Certified Internal Auditor, Certified Government Financial
Manager, Certified Public Finance Officer and/or Certified Management
Accountant are desirable.
- Physically and mentally able to perform the classifications essential
functions as summarized under typical tasks.
Bargaining Unit: Middle Management
EEOC Job Category: 02
Occupational Grouping: 80
Workers Comp Code: 0053