City considers adding internal auditor

City hall is considering an internal auditor position to ensure that council priorities are met with financial prudence

City hall is considering an internal auditor position to ensure that council priorities are met with financial prudence and that every dime of the taxpayers’ money is spent efficiently and with purpose.

Nanaimo Mayor John Ruttan said an internal auditor would help build trust between taxpayers and the elected officials who spend the money, and hold council more accountable for its decisions.

“I totally support an internal auditor and it is something we should definitely look at,” said Ruttan. “An auditor would be somewhat independent of city staff and could make his or her own assessment of what the city is doing in regards to diligence, while unbiasedly giving opinions back to elected personnel about how they see the city progressing.

“Some people still question everything we do, but we are trying, in my opinion, to be very open and very transparent in how we spend taxpayer money.”

An internal auditor was recommended as a higher service level in the 2012-2016 financial plan. The position is common in other Canadian municipalities.

“An internal auditor is a way to build trust with the community,” said Al Kenning, city manager. “There is growing concern as to how the city spends $160 million annually and this position can address those concerns.”

An internal auditor would report directly to top levels of city staff and city council.

Kenning noted that the province has also created a municipal auditor position to oversee municipal spending, but said the positions wouldn’t overlap.

The provincial auditor is more concerned with municipalities following Local Government Act regulations and wouldn’t likely have the time to focus on any single municipality, while an internal auditor would have intimate access to Nanaimo’s accounts.

“They’re not necessarily the same mandate,” said Kenning.

It is estimated the position would cost as much as $100,000 and would be a union-exempt position.

Coun. Jim Kipp said considering the amount of money council is responsible for and increasingly complicated financial transactions, it makes sense to have another pair of eyes on the books.

“As a councillor, I’ve spent about $750 million,” said Kipp.

Ruttan said if the position is approved by council, the city will move quickly to fill the position.

“We’re trying to move along as quickly as we can,” he said. “It’s certainly on the radar to get it going and get that position activated as early as we can and we see this as an important step. It should be seen by the public as our interest in making sure we are accountable for what happens.”

reporter2@nanaimobulletin.com

City hall is considering an internal auditor position to ensure that council priorities are met with financial prudence and that every dime of the taxpayers’ money is spent efficiently and with purpose.

Nanaimo Mayor John Ruttan said an internal auditor would help build trust between taxpayers and the elected officials who spend the money, and hold council more accountable for its decisions.

“I totally support an internal auditor and it is something we should definitely look at,” said Ruttan. “An auditor would be somewhat independent of city staff and could make his or her own assessment of what the city is doing in regards to diligence, while unbiasedly giving opinions back to elected personnel about how they see the city progressing.

“Some people still question everything we do, but we are trying, in my opinion, to be very open and very transparent in how we spend taxpayer money.”

An internal auditor was recommended as a higher service level in the 2012-2016 financial plan. The position is common in other Canadian municipalities.

“An internal auditor is a way to build trust with the community,” said Al Kenning, city manager. “There is growing concern as to how the city spends $160 million annually and this position can address those concerns.”

An internal auditor would report directly to top levels of city staff and city council.

Kenning noted that the province has also created a municipal auditor position to oversee municipal spending, but said the positions wouldn’t overlap.

The provincial auditor is more concerned with municipalities following Local Government Act regulations and wouldn’t likely have the time to focus on any single municipality, while an internal auditor would have intimate access to Nanaimo’s accounts.

“They’re not necessarily the same mandate,” said Kenning.

It is estimated the position would cost as much as $100,000 and would be a union-exempt position.

Coun. Jim Kipp said considering the amount of money council is responsible for and increasingly complicated financial transactions, it makes sense to have another pair of eyes on the books.

“As a councillor, I’ve spent about $750 million,” said Kipp.

Ruttan said if the position is approved by council, the city will move quickly to fill the position.

“We’re trying to move along as quickly as we can,” he said. “It’s certainly on the radar to get it going and get that position activated as early as we can and we see this as an important step. It should be seen by the public as our interest in making sure we are accountable for what happens.”

reporter2@nanaimobulletin.com

Just Posted

Regional District of Nanaimo is seeking input from the public for its transit redevelopment strategy. (News Bulletin file)
Public input sought as RDN works on transit redevelopment strategy

RDN wants to know where people want bus stops, shelters and pedestrian and cycling connections

Douglas Holmes, current Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District chief administrative officer, is set to take on that position at the Regional District of Nanaimo come late August. (Submitted photo)
Regional District of Nanaimo’s next CAO keen to work on building partnerships

Douglas Holmes to take over top administrator role with RDN this summer

(PQB News file photo)
Fireworks report highlights enforcement challenges for Regional District of Nanaimo

Director: ‘I just think it’s wasting everybody’s time’

Neighbours fight a small late-night bush fire with garden hoses and shovels in Cinnabar Valley on June 5. They couldn’t get help from local fire services because the fire was located in an area under B.C. Wildfire Services jurisdiction. (Photo courtesy Muriel Wells)
Nanaimo residents on edge of city limits left to put out bush fire themselves

Cinnabar Valley residents tackle fire with hoses and buckets for two and a half hours

Nanaimo artist Dave Stevens is displaying paintings inspired by arbutus trees and the Millstone River at Nanaimo Harbourfront Library from now until the end of fall. (Josef Jacobson/News Bulletin)
Nanaimo writer and artist’s work goes up at Harbourfront library

Dave Stevens presents work inspired by arbutus trees and the Millstone River

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps near Nanaimo

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Most Read