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New auditor for cities will find most are 'well run' says Chilliwack mayor

Extracting value for the taxpayer dollar is behind the appointment of Basia Ruta, the first auditor general for local government (AGLG) in B.C.

"At every level of government we need to find new and innovative ways to make sure British Columbians are getting the best value for their money," said Premier Christy Clark, in a news release last week. "That is why I am proud to announce that Basia Ruta will become B.C.'s first auditor general for local government."

Chilliwack Mayor Sharon Gaetz wished the new AGLG well in her new position.

"I believe she will find that municipalities, which are the government closest to the people, are well run, accountable and transparent," Gaetz told The Progress.

"Unlike other levels of government, we are not, by law, permitted to run deficit budgets."

City of Chilliwack books are audited annually.

"I believe that she will confirm that most local governments are prudent in the spending of our eight cents on the tax dollar," Gaetz added.

The new AGLG will conduct performance audits of local government services and offer recommendations on how to find savings and streamline the effectiveness of operations.

Ruta is a chartered accountant and with experience working in the federal Office of the Auditor General, Canada Customs and Revenue Agency, and as Environment Canada's chief financial officer. With more than three decades in both the public and private sector, according to the release, she has solid knowledge of local and regional governance, in part by conducting audits of local government, hospital and community organizations.

She will begin her five-year term at the AGLG's Surrey office in January 2013.

jfeinberg@theprogress.com

twitter.com/chwkjourno

 

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