2020-112 Audit Scope and Objectives

Homeless Services—County Continuum of Care Agencies

The audit by the California State Auditor will provide independently developed and verified information related to homeless services Continuum of Care (CoC) agencies in five counties, including a large county in Southern California, a county on the Central Coast, a county in the Bay Area, a county in the San Joaquin Valley, and a county in the Sacramento Valley. The audit's scope will include, but not be limited to, the following activities:

  1. Review and evaluate the laws, rules, and regulations significant to the audit objectives.
  2. Review the selected CoCs' planning and strategies for administering services to those experiencing homelessness and determine best practices of, and resources necessary for, service coordination with local nonprofits and other homeless service agencies.
  3. Identify effective strategies for CoCs to conduct accurate annual counts of those experiencing homelessness in coordination with other homeless service agencies.
  4. Determine the necessary resources and internal protocols for CoCs to measure the effectiveness of their programs, including collecting, retaining, and analyzing complete and accurate data. Identify any barriers the CoCs have experienced in collecting, retaining, and analyzing such data and best practices or tools the CoCs use to overcome these barriers.
  5. Verify the extent to which each CoC collaborates with nonprofit organizations to increase its outreach and services provided to those experiencing homelessness.
  6. Identify opportunities or incentives the State could provide CoCs to work collaboratively with nonprofit and other service organizations to secure additional federal funding to assist those experiencing homelessness.
  7. To the extent possible, determine whether structural changes or resources are needed to ensure the CoCs obtain complete and accurate data at each point of the funding process, including during the evaluation of applications from service providers.
  8. Determine methods for CoCs to increase the quality and number of service providers, including methods to do the following:
    1. Collect and report the number of eligible services providers within the CoC area.
    2. Isolate reasons that providers do not apply for certain requests for proposals.
    3. Identify the qualities of services providers to which CoCs award funds.
    4. Measure the effect that service providers have on homelessness.
    5. Identify geographic areas within the CoC that have insufficient or no services for those experiencing homelessness and the reasons why these areas have inadequate resources.
  9. Identify any best practices at the CoCs for improving accountability and the efficiency and effectiveness of services to those experiencing homelessness that other CoCs could use to improve their efforts.
  10. Review and assess any other issues that are significant to the audit.

California State Auditor's Office
02/26/2020