Auditor-generals can be helpful to governments

Editor, The Record:

Municipalities have not been generally receptive to the concept of a provincially appointed municipal auditor-general. I understand their hesitation as I know that at both the federal and the provincial levels auditor-generals have produced reports from time to time that are embarrassing to government.

At the same time, these reports are often instructive, helpful in correcting flaws, and in curbing wasteful spending.

Value for money audits can be particularly revealing and rather than being something to fear, I believe should be embraced for their instructional possibilities.

Consider, for example, the bike route signage in Mission. Bicycles painted on roads all over the city where no actual bike lanes exist with sign posts at every painted road marking. I have not met anyone who understands why these were put in place nor sees the usefulness of them.

We have been told that they did not cost the district anything as they were paid for with a surplus from a provincial grant to build a trail around Heritage Park. The last time I checked provincial, federal, and municipal funding came from the same pockets.

It just seems to me that a value for money audit on this project alone might bring home the realization that no government spending comes without cost to the taxpayer.

I am pretty sure that there are plenty of other needs in Mission that could have produced better value for money than the bike route/non-bike lane signage.

Randy Hawes

Abbotsford-Mission MLA