Courtesy of the Government of BC:
The office of auditor general for local government will continue to operate. An independent review shows that the office offers value as a resource for communities to help them deliver the services people count on.
“Communities throughout British Columbia have let us know that they find value in the services offered by the auditor general for local government (AGLG) and that is why the office will continue to operate,” said the Hon. Selina Robinson, BC's Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. “The review shows that the office provides local governments with useful recommendations that are being implemented in communities around our province. While progress has been made in recent years, I expect the AGLG to continue improving its service to local governments by working closely with ministry staff on the report recommendations.”
Robinson initiated the independent review of the AGLG as required by legislation. The review was completed by Kelly Daniels, an independent consultant, and contains a global best-practices scan for performance auditing, a survey to all local governments in B.C. and interviews with key stakeholders.
The survey found that a majority of audited local governments feel they have benefited and are on track to implement the AGLG’s recommendations. Additionally, the survey indicates that almost 90% of non-audited local governments have read the AGLG’s recommendations to other communities, and the majority are using the reports as a resource to benefit their own communities.
Interviews were conducted with key stakeholders, including Local Government Management Association, Government Finance Officers Association, Columbia Institute’s Centre for Civic Governance, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business and the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM).
Stakeholders reported a significant improvement in the approach, performance and professionalism of the AGLG office over the past two years, beginning with the change in AGLG leadership in 2015.
The report provides recommendations to help the AGLG office serve local governments more efficiently and explore alternative approaches to providing performance audits, particularly for smaller communities, that would not require onerous staff time to support the audit team.
The ministry will work with AGLG staff to review and consider the report’s recommendations to improve the AGLG’s future operations.
The review was overseen by a working group comprised of representatives from the ministry, UBCM and a local government that underwent a review by the AGLG.
Independent consultant Kelly Daniels, former chief administrative officer of the Capital Regional District and Regional District of Nanaimo, conducted the five-year review.
71% of local governments that had been audited felt they benefited a medium to high degree from the audits.
86% of local governments that had not been audited indicated that someone in their organization had read a performance audit report or perspectives booklet.
Since its creation in 2012, the office of the auditor general for local government has completed a total of 27 performance audits.
Read the Auditor General for Local Government Act and Office Review 2012 – 2017: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/british-columbians-our-governments/local-governments/governance-powers/auditor_general_local_government_review_2012_2017.pdf